One of the brightest prospects in the comedy world, Neel Kolhatkar boasts a CV rivalling many seasoned professionals. With a subscriber base that had previously garnered him millions of hits on his YouTube and Facebook videos, Neel skyrocketed to Internet fame as a 19 year old in 2013 with a series of punchy and hard hitting Aussie impressions videos. These have since been superseded by popular and provocative short films- beginning with Modern Educayshun in 2015, which has amassed over 5 million views on YouTube alone.
Since winning The Melbourne International Comedy Festival (MICF)’s national Class Clowns Competition at the tender age of fifteen, Neel has gone on to perform at all of Australia’s top comedy clubs and festivals, as well as around the UK and USA by invitation. In both 2010 and ‘11 he was invited to perform at MICF’s Teenage Gala – a showcase of Australia’s best comedians aged 20 or under, and in 2013 Neel was again handpicked by the Festival directors as the youngest of 5 comics to perform as part of its prestigious annual show The Comedy Zone- featuring the finest up and coming comedians in the nation.
A prolific stand-up comedian and writer, Neel’s insightful, hard-hitting and at times scathing commentary on topics ranging from youth, media and gender to race, coupled with his array of character voices, impressions, crowd-work and charismatic stage presence has charmed audiences across the globe. Neel is making waves overseas, with runs at Edinburgh Festival and performing by invitation as a part of the New York Comedy Festival and the Just For Laughs Festival’s televised Stand Up Series at the Sydney Opera House.
Following sold-out runs across all of the major comedy festivals and his well-received debut season at the Edinburgh Fringe, Neel has toured five one-hour solo shows across Australia, New Zealand and the UK, as well as releasing two self-produced stand-up specials on YouTube, which are soon to be followed by his newest live special, to be filmed at Sydney’s iconic Comedy Store in November 2018.
Neel was a main cast member of the digital Emmy award winning TV show #7DaysLater in 2013. Also listed in the 20-year-old’s TV credits are writing and performing for SBS’s Stand-up at Bella Union, The Comedy Channel’s No Laughing Matter and Just For Laughs Stand Up Series galas, ABC TV’s Mediacrity, and SBS’s Comedy Runway pilot Tip Rats, as well as featuring on a couple of episodes of popular topical Nine series 20 to 1. In 2018 Neel had lead roles in Tahir’s Street Smarts, and Skit Happens for Network Ten’s Pilot Week. Neel is a talented improviser who after leading his school to a state Theatresports title way back in 2009 went on to found a small business teaching improvisation and drama to children and teenagers.
Neel has amassed over a million Facebook, 500,000 YouTube and 80,000 Instagram subscribers, totalling 1.5+ million social media fans along with views well into the high tens of millions across all platforms. His consummate professionalism led YouTube to approach Neel to host their tenth anniversary celebrations attended by the top Australian content creators, music partners, TV networks, as well as YouTube and Google heads and heads of marketing.
"you need to see Neel Kolhatkar...he will have you wishing the show hadn’t been only an hour" Broadway Baby (UK)
"clever, incisive and outright hilarious" Theatre People
"Kolhatkar is undeniably a talent. His impersonations were flawless, his crowd interaction strong" Herald Sun
"This guy is extremely funny. Neel’s impressions are truly brilliant. Raps and sings like an absolute champion" Beat Magazine
"perfectly timed punchlines are met with raucous laughter during an energetic hour" The Guardian