Daughter of veteran journalist Vinod Dua and Padmavati Dua, a doctor, Mallika comes from a family that is as distant from the world of entertainment as the sun is from the earth. She never actively thought of being a comedian. It happened by chance. She used to perform on stage while in college and most of it used to be comedy. She feels comedy is more effective when done on stage in front of a live audience, “It’s more difficult to do a serious play and convince the audience. It can go really wrong and look very tacky but a bunch of us, who were studying abroad would meet every summer and put up these really funny plays. We would take plays from all over the world and adapt them and I would act in them. That is when comedy really started.”
After passing out of the Modern School, Barakhamba, she went to Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania to do her graduation in theatre performance. She says she never actually thought of taking up comedy as a full-fledged profession because the idea of a comedian in Bollywood movies meant playing stock characters day in and day out. “It was only after Russell Peters or Sasha Baron Cohen came that we realised that you can be a protagonist in your own right and still be funny and be in charge of what you are doing and not just support the main cast.”
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