On my pinboard - Anuradha Menon

On my pinboard - Anuradha Menon

On my pinboard - Anuradha Menon

Best remembered for her alter-ego ‘Lola Kutty’, theatre artiste Anuradha Menon has managed to garner innumerable fans through her years in theatre, as a standup comedian and in cinema.

The bespectacled VJ who won hearts with a heavy Malayalam accent and sporting a ‘kanjeevaram’ silk sari is also known for her role as a governess in Divya Palat’s play ‘The Verdict’. She went on to turn heads with her energy in more plays including ‘Zen Katha’ and ‘Sammy!’.

She is also one of those standup comedians who has garnered many laughs. She co-wrote and performed a sketch comedy show, ‘Rinse Cycle’, with standup comic Kaneez Surka and recently performed at ‘That Comedy Club’. On the silver screen too, she has made her presence with ‘Quick Gun Murugun’ and ‘Happy New Year’.

(As told to Anushka Sivakumar)

Inspiration
Joan Rivers
“I never wanted to emulate or be like just one person. On the other hand, I take inspiration from people around me. I have been fond of people who do crazy, unconventional stuff which requires courage. Joan Rivers, the working female comic at the age of 82 is someone I admire. She is witty, sarcastic and can be rude and acerbic as well. She has juggled many professions gracefully in her life. She was a writer, producer, comedian and what not! I’m inspired by my parents too. My mom can’t do something simple but can handle complicated tasks very well. She is scared of water but she organised my wedding smoothly in just a span of five days.”

Musician
Adele

“Adele is my favourite singer. She is one superstar who seems to have broken all stereotypes and expectations that an actress or a model is supposed to live upto today. In her own way, she has asked people to just deal with the way she is even if she doesn’t mould into the tag of being the ‘perfect girl’. She has said no to size zero, in a world where there is always pressure to look perfect. She also manages to strike a great balance between her personal and professional front.”

Film
‘Gandhi’
“I watched the movie when I was in 12th standard and felt very proud and patriotic. I remember taking part in a play that depicted the life of Mahatma Gandhi. I was Sarojini Naidu in that play. Such incidents make the movie even more special to me. I found ‘Gandhi’ to be a very well-rounded movie. It was exceptional in terms of script, acting, direction, cinematography and storyline. The characters were portrayed in a very rich, dense and realistic manner. I used to marvel at the ability and talent of the director, Richard Attenborough. He could pack someone’s entire lifetime in a span of 2 hours. I can watch it any number of times.”

Food
‘Appam’ and stew
“I can’t decide between ‘appam’ and stew and prawn curry and rice. I can eat them at anytime. I can cook both these but I am happier cooking on Western cuisine. My cook takes care of the Indian cuisine. I love the homely aroma that I get when I bite into ‘appam’. The stew has a warm, spicy, aromatic flavour. It’s not too heavy and can make a perfect breakfast or dinner. I can have ‘appam’ and stew all day. I believe it is the food of the god.”

Place
London
“I have some lovely memories of London. I studied in London School of Drama for a year. There was a sense of freedom that I enjoyed and I fell in love with the place. Moving to London after studying literature was a dream come true. I loved taking the underground railway system. It was the perfect means of transport for dummies. I have no sense of direction and I knew that I wouldn’t get lost in London if I travelled by the tube. Some of my favourite places there are ‘Fortnum & Mason’ and The Criterion Theatre at Piccadilly Circus. I also loved the Notting Hill Carnival. I get nostalgic everytime I go back to London. I have gone back at different phases of my life and rediscover a different side of London. I went there with my son recently and it was a new experience.”

Author
Haruki Murakami
“I studied English Literature in college and there was always this tendency to analyse and dissect whatever I read. I was excited by all the analogies and literary devices my professors would teach me and would apply them to everything I read. This, however, sucked the joy of reading. What helped me get back to reading was Haruki Murakami’s novels. My favourite works of his are ‘Norwegian Wood’ and ‘South of the Border, West of the Sun’. I love how Murakami’s works cover an entire genre in depth. The books weave out of elements of fantasy and reality with so much ease and effortlessness. I wish I knew Japanese as I would have loved the books even more.”


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