Aziz Ansari juggles careers, brings stand-up tour to BR

NBC photo by CHRIS HASTON -- Aziz Ansari
NBC photo by CHRIS HASTON -- Aziz Ansari

He’s an actor, stand-up comedian, and well, juggler.

Aziz Ansari, break-out star of NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” also tours the country with his stand-up act, not just in the off-season, but also during current shooting for the comedy series’ seventh season. There’s where the juggling comes in.

On Tuesday, Ansari spoke from Los Angeles during a break in the day’s filming. Ansari plays city government employee Tom Haverford opposite Amy Poehler on the Emmy- and Golden Globe-nominated “Parks.”

“I work with a great group of people,” Ansari said, of Poehler and the rest of the cast, which includes Chris Pratt, Nick Offerman, Adam Scott, Rashida Jones and Rob Lowe.

“Parks” revolves around the outlandish doings of public officials in the fictional Indiana town of Pawnee as they try to make their city a better place. Ansari fits right in as the sarcastic, underachieving Haverford.

This will be the final season for “Parks,” which is expected to premiere on NBC’s schedule at midseason.

“There are several things in the works, but’s it’s all a secret,” Ansari said of his post-“Parks” acting plans.

Meanwhile, Ansari heads out next week for six straight stand-up tour stops, starting in Santa Fe, New Mexico, on Monday, and ending in Dallas on Saturday. He hits Baton Rouge Thursday on a stop just recently added to his “Modern Romance” comedy tour.

Romance is just one of the subjects Ansari covers in his pretty much R-rated show. Among his comic influences were Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle.

“I like to talk about things that people are interested in, and that are funny,” he said. “I wouldn’t do a whole show on shampoo.”

The 31-year-old Ansari said he began his career in comedy going to open mics while attending New York University. Friends thought he was funny, and encouraged him.

“I guess I was a funny kid,” Ansari said. “I always liked to make people laugh.”

Aziz Ansari ‘Modern Romance’ Comedy Tour

WHEN: 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11

WHERE: River Center, 275 S. River Road, Baton Rouge

TICKETS: $23.80-$53.40, brrivercenter.com