Leicester Comedy Festival
The Leicester Comedy Festival is an annual comedy festival held in a number of venues across Leicester, England early in the year. The festival started in 1994 with 40 events in 23 venues over 7 days throughout Leicestershire, attracting 5,000 people. The festival now attracts over 60,000 people from all over the world and is seen as one of the 'top 5 comedy festivals in the world' (The Guardian)
Since then many top stand-up comedians have performed in the festival including Jo Brand, Jack Dee, Dave Gorman, Rory Bremner, Simon Pegg, Alan Davies, Bill Bailey, The Mighty Boosh, Johnny Vegas, Rich Hall, Jimmy Carr, Dara Ó Briain, Russell Howard, Dave Spikey, Harry Hill, Dan Willis and Roseanne Barr. The main programme is also complemented by workshops and outdoor street events to encourage the development of comedy skills. Every year towards the end of the Festival the Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year is announced.
2014 saw the inaugural UK Pun Championships, at the festival, hosted by Lee Nelson. The winner was Darren Walsh. The competition included the line "My computer's got a Miley Virus. It's stopped twerking.” Walsh went on to take part in the O. Henry Pun-Off World Championships in Austin, Texas. In 2015 the UK Pun Champion was Leo Kearse.
- Mercury, Leicester (14 February 2014). "Comedy Festival Review: The UK Pun Championships at Just The Tonic". Leicester Mercury. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
- "Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival". Comedy-festival.co.uk. 9 January 2015. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
- "Leo Kearse". Leo Kearse. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
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