8:00pm (Reception, 6:30-7:30pm)
in conversation with Owen Benjamin
Yes, My Accent Is Real:
And Some Other Things I Haven’t Told You
Ann and Jerry Moss Theatre
New Roads School
Herb Alpert Educational Village
3131 Olympic Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90404
$20 General Admission seating
$30 Reserved Section seating
$43 Reserved Section Seating + Nayyar’s book
$95 Includes pre-event reception, Reserved section seat
+ Nayyar’s book
Kunal Nayyar was born in London and raised in New Delhi, India. He first came to the United States in 1999 to pursue a bachelor’s degree in business administration and went on to receive an MFA in acting from Temple University. Playing the character of Raj on The Big Bang Theory, he has been part of the ensemble since the show debuted in 2007. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Neha, who was named Miss India in 2006.
Of all the charming misfits on television, there’s no doubt Raj from The Big Bang Theory—the sincere yet incurably geeky Indian-American astrophysicist—ranks among the best of the misfits. He is every bit as loveable as the character he plays on TV. In this revealing collection of irreverent, hilarious, and self-deprecating essays, Kunal Nayyar traces his journey from a little boy in New Delhi who mistakes an awkward first kiss for a sacred commitment, gets nosebleeds chugging Coca-Cola to impress other students, and excels in the sport of badminton, to the confident, successful actor on the set of TV’s most-watched sitcom since Friends.
Going behind the scenes of The Big Bang Theory and into his personal experiences, Kunal introduces readers to the people who helped him grow, such as his James Bond-loving, mustachioed father who taught him the most important lessons in life: Treat a beggar as you would a king. There are two sides to every story. A smile goes a long way. And, when in doubt, use a spreadsheet. Kunal also shares his college years in Portland, where he takes his first sips of alcohol and learns to let loose with his French, 6’8” gentle-giant roommate, works his first-ever job for the university’s housekeeping department cleaning toilets for minimum wage, and begins a series of romantic exploits that go just about as well as they would for Raj. (That is, until he meets and marries a former Miss India in an elaborate seven-day event that we get to experience in a chapter titled “My Big Fat Indian Wedding.”)
Yes, My Accent is Real is a witty and often inspiring collection of underdog tales follows a young man as he traverses two continents in search of a dream, along the way transcending culture and language (and many, many embarrassing incidents) to somehow miraculously land the role of a lifetime.
Owen Benjamin is a comedian and actor, best known for his hilarious blend of stand-up and musical comedy. He has appeared in the movies The House Bunny (2008), All’s Faire in Love (2009), Jack and Jill (2011), and the soon to be released Staten Island Summer with the cast of SNL.
Owen is no stranger to television, having recently held one of the lead roles on TBS’s Sullivan & Son. He’s performed his unique stand-up sets on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, Inside Amy Schumer, and Comedy Central Presents: Owen Benjamin. His first hour-long special High Five Till It Hurts premiered on Comedy Central in 2014. Owen can be also heard on an upcoming episode of the long-running Fox comedy Family Guy.
Presently, you can catch Owen Benjamin perform stand-up live throughout the country leading up to his second hour-long special Huge Pianist. Visit his website.