Dan Nainan | Biography

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  • Full Name Dan Nainan
  • Occupation Stand-up Comedian, Former Corporate Employee
  • Nationality American


Popular Opening Act Comedian for Comedian Russell Peters

Dan Nainan | Biography

Nainan released a self-learning book 'The Best Book On How To Become A Full Time Stand-up Comedian,' in 2011

Dan Nainan was working as a Senior Technical Marketing Manager at Intel Corporation when he identified his fear on-stage while doing technical demonstrations along with the company officials. To over stage fear, Naina took up a comedy class, which later became his profession. He has performed in front of renowned personalities like Barack Obama, Donald Trump and is popular for his opening act for Canadian comedian Russell Peters.

Dan Nainan is a comedian known for his opening act for Russell Peters.

Who is Dan Nainan?

After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in General Business and Management from the University of Maryland College Park, Nainan began to for Intel Corporation in 2003. He initially joined as a tour manager and got promoted to a senior technical marketing engineer in 2004. As this job required him to do demonstrations with the company CEO and other officials, Nainan struggled to handle the stage and face the audience. 

To overcome his fear, Nainan took up a comedy class. It significantly improved his on-stage appearance, and he eventually started performing jokes during company meetings and conferences.

Subsequently, he was promoted to Strategic Relations Manager of the Northeastern Region in 2007, and he moved to New York City. There he began pursuing comedy professionally and soon left his job at Intel in 2008.

After that, Nainan won a comedic championship and got to meet the HBO comedian Robert Schimmel. He went on to tour with Schimmel and learned more about stand-up comedy. He also met Comedian Russell Peters during a gig at the New York Improv and went on to tour along with Peters to do an opening act.

Nainan had also performed in front of notable figures such as Barack Obama, Donald Trump, Hilary Clinton, and Steve Wozniak. He was also featured in Apple Commercials along with TED, TEDx inspirational conferences conducted in 27 countries.

He had authored a self-learning book, 'The Best Book On How To Become A Full Time Stand-up Comedian,' published in 2011.

Early Life and Education

Nainan was born on 4 May 1981 in Bloomington, Indiana. His father is a nuclear physicist from India, and his mother, a child psychologist from Japan.

He began playing piano when he was two years old and learned guitar, bass, drums, and cello as he grew up.

Nainan graduated from the Bethesda Chevy Chase High School in 1999 and joined the University of Maryland College Park for college. He eventually graduated in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science in General Business and Management.

Career at Intel

After graduating in 2003, Nainan began working as a Tour Manager at the Intel Corporation. In 2004, he was promoted to Senior Technical Marketing Engineer.

As a marketing engineer, Nainan had to get on stage and conduct technical demonstrations with the CEO or Chairman of Intel. Since he had stage fear, he would be nervous and found it difficult to speak on stage. To improve his public speaking skills, Nainan started taking comedy classes.

Soon, Nainan gained confidence being on stage. Along with the demonstrations, he started cracking jokes and doing stand-up comedy in company gatherings. In due course, he did comedy in clubs and competitions.

In 2007, Nainan was promoted as a Strategic Relations Manager of the Northeastern Region, for which he had to transfer to New York City from Silicon Valley. After a year, he quit his job at Intel in 2008 and started pursuing comedy full-time. 

About his decision on quitting a stable job from one of the largest corporations in the world and embark a life on doing comedy, he said, "Although I loved my job with Intel where I was traveling around the world, the position I got promoted to was home-based, not very technical, and I rarely got to travel, so I finally decided to ditch that job, cash in some stock options to have a nest egg, and just go for the comedy! Fortunately, it turned out to be the correct decision!"

Comedy Career

Nainan's final assignment for his comedy class was to perform at the Punchline Comedy Club in San Francisco. It was his first public performance, and it was successful. 

His friends at Intel watched his performance video and invited him to do stand-up comedy at a company dinner in Las Vegas in front of 200 employees. Nainan was again called up to perform at an annual sales conference before 2,500 people. He then continued comedy at Intel conferences for the next two years until he got promoted and moved to New York.

While he was trying to gain prominence as a comedian, Nainan won a comedy contest organized by the Washington DC Improv club. It led him to meet the HBO comedian Robert Schimmel. Nainan persuaded Schimmel to allow him to perform during his show in Hawaii. Soon, Nainan went to Honolulu and performed at Schimmel's show.

Impressed by Nainan, Schimmel went on to teach him more and got him performance gigs at some of the renowned comedy clubs in the country.

Nainan also got a chance to impress the Canadian Comedian Russell Peters during a gig at the New York Improv. Subsequently, he went on to tour with Peters as the opening artist of the show.

Nainan eventually gained prominence and became known as a ‘100 percent clean comedian.' He got opportunities to perform in front of numerous personalities, including Barack Obama, during his 2009 Presidential inauguration, Donald Trump, Hilary Clinton, and Steve Wozniak.

He was also featured in Apple Commercials and TED, TEDx inspirational conferences in 27 countries.

Other Jobs 

Alongside comedy, Nainan invested in companies and start-ups soon after leaving Intel in 2008. As a result, he has accumulated investment experience in diversified sectors such as real estate, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc. He also began investing in Bitcoin in 2013.

Twitter Followers and Age

In 2012, Nainan admitted to purchasing Twitter followers for the purpose of increasing his social portfolio. He explained, despite having been known by a large audience, he had significantly fewer followers on social media, which impacted his show bookings.

Additionally, there was confusion about his real age. Different sources reported Nainan's age differently. The Daily beast magazine, in a 2017 article, clarified that he was 20 years younger than he was claimed to be.

Nevertheless, his official website has enunciated his original date of birth as 4 May 1981.


In 2011, Nainan published a self-learning book 'The Best Book On How To Become A Full Time Stand-up Comedian.'

In the book, Nainan shared simple ways to perform and create a joke as a touring comedian and a full-time comedian.

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