It seems to be the season of comebacks and Teacher Wanjiku is not one to be left behind. After leaving Churchill Show unceremoniously and briefly attempting to start her own, Teacher Wanjiku’s hiatus left many Kenyans wondering what happened to the one time funniest Kenyan stand-up comedian.
She kicked off her comeback tour last Friday with a one-man show at the Kenya National Theatre.
Although the show was a resounding success, her return begs a lot of questions. In this Nairobi News exclusive we sought to clear the air.
Nairobi News: Now that you are back, are you planning to reclaim your spot on TV?
Teacher Wanjiku: No. I am not planning to go back to TV. I want to tour all the major Kenyan towns with my show, The 11 Commandment, then go to the (United) States.
NN: Why don’t you want to go back to TV?
TW: Every comedian dreams of doing a one-man show, but in Kenya we focus too much on TV and adverts. Our core business is to make people laugh; we are performers not MC to usher in artistes. Doing a one-man show enables me to do that.
NN: So, where were you?
TW: My first pregnancy was hectic, I was still hustling so I had to work throughout. So, this time I took time off to have my baby and take care of my family.
NN: What do you say to your critics who think you left because you lost relevance?
TW: When you are at the peak of your career, there is a danger of giving people too much, when you take a break you give them a chance to miss you. I was beginning to be predictable, and as an experienced performer, I knew it was time to take a break. I just came back and I already have a deal with Bata so I am not doing too bad. My show was a success and we are already planning for the next one.
NN: What’s your advice to upcoming comedians?
TW: Build a firm foundation, establish a fun base that will remember when you are gone. You need to take a break every now and then, but if you are memorable then people will always remember you. Most comedians don’t have the guts to leave, that is why they dry up. Let’s also stop putting each other down, we all take different paths to the top. Just because you have achieved what I haven’t doesn’t mean you are better than me.