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Grapevine

Stand-up comedian dies on stage while performing & audience thinks it is part of act

Indian stand-up comedian, Manjunath Naidu collapsed on stage during his performance in Dubai after complaining of high level of anxiety. As he suffered cardiac arrest, the audience laughed, thinking it was part of the show. The incident occurred at Clavichord in Signature Hotel.

He was born in Abu Dhabi but later shifted base to Dubai. “He was the last act in the line-up. He went on stage and was making people laugh with his stories. He was talking about his father and family. And then he got into a story of how he suffers from anxiety. And a minute into the story he collapsed,” Miqdaad Dohadwala, his friend and fellow comedian, was quoted as saying in the report.

People thought it was part of the act. They took it as a joke as he was talking about anxiety and then collapsed, he said. Dohadwala said that the paramedics could not revive him. “His parents passed away and he has a brother but no relatives here. All in the arts and comedy circle are his family,” he added.

Stand-up comedian Salman Z Qureshi told Gulf News that he stayed back to watch Naidu’s performance after his set. “I had almost skipped out performing on Friday, but Manju insisted I hang out and I guess maybe he had some premonition, or it was fate. I had already performed my set and was watching Manju, who was probably 15 minutes into his act before we noticed a dip in his energy.”

Qureshi said Naidu seemed happy before his performance and did not suffer from medical problems. “Manju did suffer from post performance stress but nothing serious,” he added. “He was always a happy guy. He dreamt big, always taught us to show gratitude for what we have, especially since he lost his parents at a young age.”

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