Stand-up comedy consists of one person standing in front of an audience and telling jokes. But in other instances, this art comes with a shock that leaves one wondering if they are seeing a double.
That has been the story of the Lucas Brothers, Keith and Kenny. The Americans have taken a different approach to comedy as the identical twins perform stand-up comedy together.
So far, this has worked for the duo as over the years, the Lucas Brothers have won both critical acclaim and a devoted fanbase.
Following in their footsteps are Malawian identical twin sisters, Mada and Linda.
The past few weeks have seen the two trending on social media, especially Facebook where they have been posting their comedy skits.
From prayers, politics, to life in general, the clips have cracked the ribs of many, no wonder their fanbase on the Madalinda Twins Facebook page keeps growing by the day.
In one of the skits that went viral, Mada and Linda are quipping about Lhomwe, one of the indigenous languages in the Southern Region. They go on and play with the sub-dialects of the language, including Chikhokholha.
This plus other clips have migrated to other platforms like Twitter and WhatsApp where the two are garnering more positive reviews.
Says Linda: “We have plans of having a company that will be promoting anything concerning arts so that people who have talent like, acting, comedy, dancing and music will be using their talent to earn a living just as it is in other countries such as South Africa and Nigeria.”
Her twin Mada said to them comedy is inborn and they will do it for as long as possible.
Born in 1996, the twins, who are also writers and actresses, started doing comedy in 2010.
“We were in secondary school then, but we were not serious with it. We were just doing it for fun,” said Mada.
“Most of the times when we were with friends having normal chats, our friends would be laughing the whole time. So, some of our friends told us that we would make good comedians,” adds Linda.
They were encouraged by their teacher of English language to take the path of comedy but they brushed it off.
Mada said; “The teacher used to tell us that being twins is an inborn morale and the added advantage is that we were born comedians. We didn’t take that seriously until we met DJ Zimbabwe Malawi also known as Pastor Wyson who is now our manager.
“He told us that we are comedians and we must start doing comedy in a serious manner. We also find it better to pass a certain message through comedy which makes everyone relax.”
Depending on circumstances, the twins sit down and scribble notes to guide their skits.
“Mostly we follow the current issues, we discuss them and come up with a concept that we follow in our skits,” states Linda.
Mada said one of them usually comes up with an idea then they work on it together.
“We prepare for some sketches while at times we end up with a comic skit spontaneously. So, it doesn’t need much preparation. We just talk about our work within few minutes and record a video,” she adds.
Holders of advanced diploma in community development, the twins are job-hunting while doing small businesses. They are inspired by a number of comedians, including Felistus Ngwira, known by her stage name NyaUyu.
“As of now, there’s no such a duo that inspires us. Actually, we have never watched twins doing stand-up comedy.
“In Malawi, there’s NyaUyu, mostly it’s because she’s a woman and unique. The other is Uganda’s Annie Kansiime and Basket Mouth who are unique in their own ways,” said Linda.
Added Mada: “For NyaUyu it’s also because of the way she started doing her thing; being so proud of coming from the North and expressing herself much in Tumbuka. We love people who love their origins. The way Kansiime carries her national flag amazes us and for Basket Mouth we just admire his energy.”
Journalist and communications specialist Thom Khanje has complemented them, saying “these twins are the next big thing on the Malawi comedy scene”.
He said the duo is unique making them stand out from other comedians.
“They bring in freshness which we haven’t seen since NyaUyu emerged.