Stand-up comedian Kapil Sharma, who is now a household name, has overcome a lot of difficulties in life to achieve this phenomenal success. His journey to stardom is not only inspiring because of his immense struggle, but also because he has won the hearts of many with his charm and unadulterated humor.
Kapil hails from a lower middle-class family in Amritsar, Punjab, where his father worked as a head constable in the police department and his mother was a homemaker. His father was diagnosed with cancer in 1997, while Kapil was still in the last year of college. His father passed away in 2004 which led to a tough financial time for the family. For Kapil, his father's liveliness and sense of humour, was inspiring.
Kapil completed his primary education from PBN Secondary School in Model Town, Amritsar and went on to study at Hindu College, Amritsar. He was in the tenth standard when he picked up his first job at a telephone booth to support his expenses. According to India TV News, he has also performed in night jagratas to earn his living.
During college, Kapil started acting for theatre but could not afford to pay the fees. However, his work was appreciated and he received recognition from several colleges, who wanted him to represent them in youth festivals and offered to sponsor his education.
With his education being sponsored, he decided to take up Commercial Art. He also did a diploma in Computer Science later. While speaking about this with The Times of India, he says,
I learnt nothing about either Commercial Art or Computer Science. My father had got very unwell at that time and I requested my principal if I could teach theatre to earn money. That's when I learnt a lot as a teacher, as you learn a lot from students while teaching. I used to do histrionics and everyone would love it, so I somehow wanted to just get into the 'Laughter Challenge'.
Once Kapil realised that he wanted to participate in the ‘Laughter Challenge’, he started looking out for audition opportunities. He went to the audition in Amritsar but got rejected. However, the selection of one of his childhood friends motivated him to continue his pursuit. He then went for the auditions held in Delhi where he was selected. Having cleared the audition, he participated in the competition and was declared the winner of the ‘Laughter Challenge’ in the year 2007.
Kapil knew that this was just a beginning and, therefore, decided to become a part of as many shows as he could. Among the various opportunities that came his way, one was ‘Comedy Circus’, a hit comedy shows at that time. He proved his mettle at the show and became the winner for six consecutive seasons as per the NDTV blog.
Kapil was still not satisfied and began thinking of how to expand further. He decided to invest all his money in creating his own production house 'K9 Productions’. In collaboration with Colors Channel, he launched a show titled ‘Comedy Nights with Kapil’. Soon, this show became a success and gained immense popularity. Almost every big superstar made an appearance on this show, whether it was Amitabh Bachchan or Shahrukh Khan.
While speaking with NDTV, he said,
This humour has worked so well as, in this show, we have tried to cater to every viewer, no matter which age group they belong to. We have stayed away from cheap comedy which assures the entire family that they can sit together and watch this show. Also, the jokes that we crack are related to the common people and therefore, resonate with many.
While this show was gaining popularity, Kapil faced another setback when the set of the show caught fire and almost everything was destroyed. He did not let this deter him and gave all that he could to rebuild the set. Another setback came when certain differences cropped up within the channel house and the show was shut down.
With a strong fan base and followers of his own, Kapil did not want to disappoint them. Despite the fact that he could not perform with the creative content he previously had, he came back with more power on a show titled ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’ on Sony Channel.
He further told NDTV,
There are definitely many physical struggles we endure while working on a TV show. However, all the pains and the struggles disappear when we receive the love that we do from millions out there.
Kapil is now running an immensely popular show and has also begun his acting career working with the likes of Abbas-Mustan. He has been ranked 27th in the ‘Celebrity-100’ list of Forbes India. Forbes India ranked him 7th in terms of fame and 11th in terms of income in their 2016 ‘Celebrity-100’ list. His journey to success proves that with perseverance, determination, and hard work, one can achieve anything that the heart truly desires.