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Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival 2016

Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival

A bumper programme has been announced for Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival 2016.

Due to take place between the 3rd and 21st February 2016, the festival is set to feature big name stars, up-and-coming comedians, and special bespoke events you won't be able to experience anywhere else.

The organisers say: "The festival's 23rd year is set to be its most diverse and inventive yet, making Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival the ideal destination for the seasoned comedy fan or someone just looking for a great night out."

Johnny Vegas, Katherine Ryan, Romesh Ranganathan, Vic & Bob, James Acaster, Chris Ramsey, Gary Delaney, Henninh Wehn, Joe Lycett, Pappy's and Shappi Khorsandi are just some of the well-known TV stars who will be appearing at the festival. Edinburgh Comedy Award winners Sam Simmons and Sofie Hagen will also be in attendance, as will magic legends Paul Daniels and Debbie McGee.

The festival has established a tradition of creating unique events and competitions so there is also a number of unique shows to look out for...

Contests finals due to take place during the festival include the Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year competition, which has a great track record of picking out future stars; the Silver Stand-Up Competition, which aims to discover a star who is over the age of 55; and the riot that is the UK Pun Championships, in which comedians aim to out-joke each other in an epic rap battle-style contest hosted by Lee Nelson.

Comedy fans can experience laughs in different ways too, with shows like the self-explanatory Comedy In The Dark and the site-specific Hotel D'Comedie featured in the programme.

Also, a number of the festival's international acts will be joining together to take on Euroversity Challenge, a contest that aims to determine the Cleverest Nation in Europe; and a bunch of comedians will appear in Odd Couples, a format inspired by the much-loved Mr and Mrs television show.

Just A Minute. Nicholas Parsons. Copyright: BBC

Meanwhile a series of seminars will look at politics, free speech, mental health and wellbeing in the context of comedy; and I Say - the annual 'comedy conversation' - will feature an interview with special guest Nicholas Parsons (pictured).

The festival will also be celebrating its patron Norman Wisdom this year via Wisdom of a Fool, a one-man play by Jack Lane which charts the legendary performer's rise to success.

To see the complete programme and get information about tickets visit www.comedy-festival.co.uk

Festival founder Geoff Rowe says: "February 2016 will see Leicester become the top UK destination for comedy and entertainment, as the festival brings together the huge variety of top British comedy talent, events, competitions and seminars. There is no better place for comedy fans to see their heroes live, discover fresh new talent and experience the thrill of live entertainment unique to the festival."

Ahead of the festival itself, on Friday 8th January, Lee Nelson will host a preview show in the city's De Montfort Hall. The evening will feature Nish Kumar, Sofie Hagen, Kai Humphries, Jen Brister, George Rigden, last year's Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year winner Tom Little, and more. This annual show is always a sell-out so fans are encouraged to book quickly. For the chance to win two tickets, plus overnight accommodation, see this Competition

Published: Monday 23rd November 2015

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