Once a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, two-time MIT graduate Dhaya Lakshminarayanan changed careers to pursue a life in stand-up comedy that has taken her all over the country. Dhaya is the 2016 winner of the Liz Carpenter Political Humor Award (previously awarded to Samantha Bee and Wanda Sykes) and was named "The Bay Area’s 11 Best Standup Comedians", and "Women to Watch" by media stations in San Francisco where she currently lives. Comedy Central Asia crowned Dhaya the Grand Prize Winner of “The Ultimate Comedy Challenge” filmed in Singapore. She's been a frequent storyteller on NPR’s Snap Judgment and hosts San Francisco’s monthly Moth StorySLAM. She hosted the premier year of the Emmy award-winning series High School Quiz Show on PBS’s WGBH.
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- Patrons must be 18 or older to attend events or classes at the DC Improv. Any exceptions are clearly noted in the event descriptions on dcimprov.com.
- There is a two-item minimum per ticket. This can be any combination of food items or beverages. Bottled water and soft drinks count as items. (The two-item minimum does not apply to comedy classes.)
- For our main showroom, the first show of any night is the "early" show. All other shows are "late" shows. Early shows are seated by time of arrival. The earlier you arrive at the club, the greater your seating options will be. Late shows have assigned seating, and assignments are made in order of ticket purchase. The earlier you buy tickets, the better your seats will be (i.e. closer to the stage). Click here for a more detailed explanation of seating policies.
- For our lounge, all shows regardless of start time are seated by time of arrival.
Dhaya Lakshminarayanan is the 2016 winner of the Liz Carpenter Political Humor Award (previously awarded to Samantha Bee, Wanda Sykes and satirist/humorist Mark Russell) presented by the National Women’s Political Caucus. KQED named her one of the twenty “Women to Watch” a series celebrating women artists, creatives and makers in the San Francisco Bay Area who are pushing boundaries in 2016. The SF Weekly named her one of the “16 Bay Area performers to watch in 2016.” She was named one of “The Bay Area’s 11 Best Standup Comedians” by SFist. The San Francisco Bay Guardian named her Best Comedian 2013 in the “Best of the Bay” Readers’ Poll. Comedy Central Asia crowned her the Grand Prize Winner of “The Ultimate Comedy Challenge” filmed in Singapore.
She has opened/featured for or worked with the following: Janeane Garofalo, Marc Maron, Greg Behrendt, Jello Biafra, Dick Gregory, Anthony Jeselnik, Maz Jobrani, Norm Macdonald, and Greg Proops. Dhaya introduced former Vice President Al Gore at an event. He then laughed onstage at her joke, so technically she once opened for Al Gore.
Dhaya was one of the chosen artists by The Asian Art Museum of San Francisco to take the entire museum over for one night. During Takeover:Dhaya Lakshminarayanan, she programmed content including stand-up comedy, humorous fake tours of the museum, and an absurdist interpretation of Indian mythological comic books. The only other artist invited to takeover the museum in 2017 was RZA from the Wu-Tang Clan
Dhaya is also a TV host and storyteller. She hosted the premier year of the Emmy award-winning series High School Quiz Show on PBS’s WGBH. She is a frequent comedic storyteller on NPR’s Snap Judgment and has appeared live in Austin on The Risk podcast. She is currently the host of San Francisco’s monthly Moth StorySLAM after winning a Moth StorySLAM and competing in the GrandSLAM at the Castro Theater (capacity 1400). ON24 awarded her the grand prize for “Best Travel Disaster Story.”
Dhaya is a solo performer, and her first play “Nerd Nation” was funded in parts by The Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center of San Francisco and support from DIVAfest which supports new and developing works by female playwrights. Her workshop run in San Francisco sold out. She has performed internationally in Shanghai, China; Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, and Singapore. In the US she has been an invited performer at Bridgetown Comedy Festival (Portland, OR), San Francisco Sketchfest, the Boston Comedy Festival (semifinalist), the Limestone Comedy Festival (Bloomington, IN) and Laugh Your Asheville Off (Asheville, NC).
The Boston Globe, The Bay Guardian, and The San Jose Mercury News have all run profiles about her. Prior to funny and show business Dhaya was a venture capitalist, management consultant, and two-time MIT graduate. She is a favorite at corporate events, panels, CEO conferences, and company-wide programs. You can indeed call her a nerd.