Photo for illustrative purposes Image Credit: Pexels

“For me, the way to anyone's heart is through their funny bone,” says Asad Raza Khan, producer and host of ‘Once You Go Brown’, a comedy-infused fest that runs at The Junction, Al Serkal Avenue on February 13.

But whether wooing someone is on the cards or not, you can’t go wrong with a present of giggles.

On the agenda for the well-timed Valentine’s Day show are Saad Haroon, finalist for Funniest Man in the World 2017 awards, social media star Danish Ali and regional favourite Salman Zahid Qureshi, who will play co-host.

Look forward to an evening of jibes at romance, relationships, humus, tahini, Shiakh Zayad Road and a whole lot more, says Raza Khan - and if nothing else, look forward to your smile muscles getting some exercise.

Meet the funny men behind the show.

Saad Haroon

Haroon can be quite literal. When the Pakistan-based comic decided to go full tilt into the business of laughter he formed a troupe that specialised in improv acts in English. He called it BlackFish. Why? Well, he explains, “I was based in Karachi and Karachi actually comes from the word Kolachi, which means blackfish, which was the main sustenance of the fishing village. I was like, ‘Well, if we stay true to our roots then, we are blackfish’ so that’s where it [the name for his group] came from.”

Observational and therefore hard-hitting Haroon calls comedy a “ballistic missile that targets the best in you, the part of you wants to laugh and be happy”. Which is probably why this is one comic you do not want to disturb during his set.

“Anything or anyone that detracts from the show is my mortal enemy,” he says. “Be it a cell phone or someone eating, they must suffer the wrath of Saad.”

Fortunately, that just probably means you’ll be in stitches.

“My wife always says treat me like a princess. So I told her, 'ok, go to sleep and don’t wake up till I kiss you’.”

- Saad Haroon

Danish Ali

What do you think of a funny doctor? Well, this stand-up guy took to social media to vent and got himself a following while he was at it. But for Pakistan-born and Canada-based Ali, comedy is not so important. “It's just something I do. I like it. I like making people laugh. Beyond that very rarely would you find me pondering the deeper meaning of what I do as mostly I'm just hustling. Maybe when I take a break from it I might be able to look back, but for now I just want to make people laugh with family-friendly comedy,” he tells Gulf News.

That said, he has a prognosis for shows, “Every show has at least one saroo [sourpuss].” Someone who will stare at him blankly. “Don't be the saroo,” he requests the crowd. Give him a chance, after all the doctor is only trying to dispense the best medicine: laughter. When asked for a teaser of his set, Ali keeps mum. He says, "Comedy is only funny once and I want people to have a good time but I can tell you I do a bit about batman in Pakistan, which is pretty funny."

Comedy is only funny once and I want people to have a good time but I can tell you I do a bit about batman in Pakistan, which is pretty funny.

Salman Zahid Qureshi

Qureshi is laughing a lot these days. “Mostly I’m laughing because I’m delirious out of lack of sleep,” explains the new father. It’s part of his creed: laugh at the things you cannot change.

“Comedy allows you to look at the world and ourselves and laugh. I cant imagine what humans would become if they couldn't do that,” he explains.

His one grimace when performing? People can get very touchy.”You’re at a comedy show. Enjoy it rather than bring your pain to it,” he says.

I went though a low [point] in my life and someone said you are the company you keep. So I started hanging out with successful people. And it worked. Now we are all unsuccessful. It’s true - you’re the company you keep.

- Salman Zahid Qureshi

I went though a low [point] in my life and someone said you are the company you keep. So I started hanging out with successful people. And it worked. Now we are all unsuccessful. It’s true - you’re the company you keep.