Nish Kumar

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Nish Kumar
Nish Kumar, 2019 Freedom of Expression Awards (40575331383) (cropped).jpg
Kumar in 2019
Nishant Kumar

(1985-08-26) August 26, 1985 (age 35)[1]
Wandsworth, London, England
Years active2004–present
Known for

Nishant Kumar (born 26 August 1985) is a British stand-up comedian[2] and radio presenter. He has hosted BBC Two's The Mash Report,[3] BBC Radio 4 Extra's topical comedy show Newsjack,[4] the Comedy Central series Joel & Nish vs The World, the BBC Radio 4 programme The News Quiz[5] and Hello America on Quibi.[6][7][8][9]

Early life and education[edit]

Kumar was born in Wandsworth in the mid-1980s and raised in Croydon, south London.[10] He attended St Olave's Grammar School in Orpington before reading English with History at Durham University.[11][12][13] He is of Indian descent,[12] with parents from Kerala.[14]


Kumar performed with Tom Neenan as a double act, Gentlemen of Leisure, having met while students at the University of Durham and performed in the Durham Revue.[15][16]

He has been performing as a solo stand-up performer in shows since 2013.[17] He also held a regular guest spot on Josh Widdicombe's Radio X show between 2013 and 2015, where he presented the feature, "Nishipedia". He has become increasingly well known for broadcasting and podcasting on topical news programmes.

He has performed solo Edinburgh shows since 2012:

  • 2012: 'Who Is Nish Kumar?'[22]
  • 2013: 'Nish Kumar Is a Comedian'
  • 2014: "Ruminations on the Nature of Subjectivity".[23]
  • 2015: "Long word... Long word... Blah Blah Blah... I'm so clever"[24] at The Pleasance Theatre, which continued as a UK tour running from October to December 2015.[25] The show was nominated for an Edinburgh Comedy Award.
  • 2016: "Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Unless You Shout the Words Real Loud", which received a number of favourable reviews.[26][27][28] A joke from the show was featured in The Daily Telegraph's list of the 37 funniest jokes from the Edinburgh Fringe.[29] This show continued as a national tour.

As a live performer, Kumar has appeared at a number of festivals and events, including the Melbourne International Comedy Festival,[30] New Zealand Comedy Festival, Leicester Comedy Festival and the comedy tent at Latitude Music Festival. In 2017, he competed in series 5 of Taskmaster with Bob Mortimer, Sally Phillips, Aisling Bea and Mark Watson.[31] The same year, Kumar completed a six-part travel series for Netflix with fellow comedian Joel Dommett, titled Joel & Nish vs The World.[32] In 2018 he appeared on Netflix's Comedians of the World.[33]

He has also appeared as a guest on Have I Got News for You, Mock the Week, Virtually Famous, 8 Out of 10 Cats, Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled, Hypothetical, The Big Fat Quiz, Russell Howard's Stand Up Central, Sweat the Small Stuff, QI, Live from the BBC, The Alternative Comedy Experience and is a frequent guest on The Bugle.

In February 2019, it was announced he would be appearing in a new Sky One sport show, Comedians Watching Football With Friends.[34]

In December 2019, Kumar was booed off stage at a Christmas charity lunch event for the Lord's Taverners. The performance, for which Kumar was not paid, included political jokes on Brexit and colonialism.[35][36] Following the event, the Lord's Taverners released a statement emphasising the apolitical nature of the organisation and expressing that they did not support the behaviour of some members of the crowd,[37] which included booing, heckling and the throwing of a bread roll.[38] In response to the event, Kumar told The Guardian: "I'm sort of amazed by how fascinated people are by the whole thing. It's not the first time I've been booed off stage [...] I consider it the life of being a comedian – they have a right to boo me."[39]

Kumar hosted the Quibi topical comedy series Hello America, which ran from August 2020 until the channel's closure in December that year.[40][9][8][6]


  1. ^ "Nish Kumar's Biography".
  2. ^ "Nish Kumar". Chortle. Retrieved 12 March 2017.
  3. ^ "The Mash Report: BBC satirical comedy cancelled after four years". BBC News. 12 March 2021. Retrieved 12 March 2021.
  4. ^ a b "Nish Kumar to host Newsjack". 6 February 2015. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  5. ^ ."BBC – Nish Kumar, Angela Barnes and Andy Zaltzman to host The News Quiz – Media Centre". Retrieved 1 February 2020.
  6. ^ a b Quibi - Hello America, retrieved 6 October 2020
  7. ^ "Quibi announces satirical news show from British comic Nish Kumar". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  8. ^ a b Tantimedh, Adi (10 July 2020). "Hello America: Nice to See Nish Kumar But a Baffling Quibi Choice". Bleeding Cool News And Rumors. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  9. ^ a b Pedersen, Erik (23 April 2020). "Quibi Adds 'Hello America,' A Satirical News Show With Comic Nish Kumar". Deadline. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  10. ^ Khan, Coco. "My Favorite End: A Comedian's Guide to South London". New York. Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  11. ^ Greenstreet, Rosanna (2 February 2019). "Nish Kumar: 'It was either comedy or being Jimi Hendrix'". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 April 2019.
  12. ^ a b Maxwell, Dominic (21 September 2016). "Nish Kumar: 'It wasn't a masterclass in heckler response. It was a furious man reacting'". The Times.
  13. ^ Laker, Chris (28 July 2017). "Who is Nish Kumar? Everything you need to know about the host of BBC Two's The Mash Report". BT Group.
  14. ^ "Nish Kumar plays life like it is as a comedian and confidence trickster".
  15. ^ "Gentlemen of Leisure". Archived from the original on 18 December 2014. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
  16. ^ Humphrey, Florianne (13 June 2017). "The Durham Revue presents 'Allstars' review". Palatinate. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
  17. ^ Kettle, James (22 June 2013). "This week's new live comedy". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 June 2015.
  18. ^ "About". The Bugle Podcast. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  19. ^ "About". Who is Nish Kumar?. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  20. ^ "Spotlight Tonight with Nish Kumar". BBC Radio 4. BBC. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
  21. ^ "Frankie Boyle's New World Order – Election Night Special". Retrieved 12 June 2017 – via YouTube.
  22. ^ "Who Is Nish Kumar?". Nish Kumar. Retrieved 13 June 2017.
  23. ^ "Nish Kumar: Ruminations..." Soho Theatre.
  24. ^ "Nish Kumar: Long Word... Long Word... Blah Blah Blah... I'm so Clever, Edinburgh Fringe review: A trenchant and clear-sighted hour". The Independent. Independent Digital News & Media. Retrieved 12 June 2017.
  25. ^ "Nish Kumar: Long Word..." The Pleasance Theatre.
  26. ^ "Nish Kumar: Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Unless You Shout the Words Real Loud". Edinburgh Festival. 12 August 2016. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  27. ^ Logan, Brian (17 August 2016). "Nish Kumar review – smart skewering from Britain's cheery clown-preacher". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  28. ^ "Comedy review: Nish Kumar: Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Unless You Shout the Words Real Loud". The Scotsman. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  29. ^ "Edinburgh Festival Fringe: the 37 funniest jokes". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  30. ^
  31. ^ "Taskmaster: Alex Horne on series 5, casting, remakes, the future". Den of Geek.
  32. ^ "Joel & Nish vs The World". Netflix. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
  33. ^ "Comedians Of The World: Nish Kumar – Very Clever Boy : Reviews 2019 : Chortle : The UK Comedy Guide". Retrieved 13 January 2019.
  34. ^ "Comedians Watching Football With Friends – Sky1 Comedy". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  35. ^ "Comic Nish Kumar booed off stage at charity bash". BBC News. Retrieved 3 December 2019.
  36. ^ "Nish Kumar gets frosty reception at Lord's Taverners charity feast". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 December 2019.
  37. ^ "Lord's Taverners statement". Lord's Taverners. Retrieved 3 December 2019.
  38. ^ "Interview: Comedian Nish Kumar on Bread, Comedy, and Heckling". Retrieved 7 December 2019.
  39. ^ "Nish Kumar gets frosty reception at Lord's Taverners charity feast". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 December 2019.
  40. ^ Bennett, Steve. "Goodbye America : News 2020 : Chortle : The UK Comedy Guide". Retrieved 24 February 2021.

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
In commission
Last held by Miles Jupp
Host of The News Quiz
Succeeded by
Angela Barnes