NOW LISTEN!: Aunty Ramba and Friends stand-up comedy show with (from left) Jailoshini Naidoo, and comedians Neville Pillay and Mervyn Pillay (far right) and, centre, in character as Aunty Ramba.

THE POPULAR Aunty Ramba heads for Durban this weekend in her brand new stage show, Aunty Ramba and Friends.

The alter ego of TV personality and actress Jailoshini Naidoo is known for her sharp wit and biting comedy that leaves her audiences rolling with laughter.

Tonight spoke with Naidoo to find out more about the aunty and her show.

“Aunty Rumba is now my alter ego, who actually developed from my having fun, impromptu telephonic conversations with my friends some years ago purely for our own entertainment. It also just developed through my observations and impersonations of some of my aunties and people I meet.

“So when I did my comedy show Curry on Laughing , I decided to include this character in the show. She just sort of evolved and got bigger and funnier and gained a life of her own each time we did the show. Soon her popularity soared. She eventually attracted repeat audiences who specifically wanted to see her,” she explained.

Soon after, Aunty Rumba made her debut on television on the TV magazine programme Eastern Mosaic. “She fast became everyone’s favourite character, appealing to all age groups, providing viewers with their Sunday morning ‘comedy fix’.

“My alter ego has now actually become more popular than the rest of us,” laughed Naidoo.

She explained who Aunty Rumba is based on: “I’ve based her on an aunt of mine but really I owe the success of Rumba to all those amazing, colourful, funny aunties and grannies we all have encountered at some point in our lives – be it at a birthday party, funeral, doctor’s waiting room or on an aeroplane.

“These truly South African women inspired me through their strong characters and their fearlessness to say what they felt about absolutely anything from cuisine to politics in their own unique ways with their own logic!

“She has an opinion and a strong one... about everything. I think every community, not just the Indian community, has a funny, crazy aunty,” she said.

Commenting on the show, Naidoo said the format is stand-up comedy, with Aunty Rumba as the highlight. “It will consist of three very popular Durban comedians, Neville Pillay, Mervyn Pillay and myself, and of course Aunty Rumba who will do her stints and skits and interact with the other comedians and the audience... she will speak her mind, share her problems, give advice... nobody is spared.

“So it’s the Pillays and the Naidoos... It’s a hilarious, crazy comedy show and each of the comedians have a very different style and content so it’s a nice balance with good variety. Aunty Rumba will also be introducing each comedian in her very own unmistakeable way. Be prepared to screech with laughter,” she said.

• Show takes place from July 17 to 20 at the iZulu Theatre at Sibaya Casino. Tickets at Computicket and Sibaya box office. Ticket price: R120.