BBC launches 2018 New Comedy Award

Monday 9th April 2018, 10:20am

  • BBC Radio 4 has launched its 2018 New Comedy Award drive
  • The annual competition seeks "the most exciting new comedy acts the UK has to offer"
  • Entry is now open - submit a 5 minute routine. The deadline to enter is Thursday 3rd May
BBC New Comedy Award. Copyright: BBC.

The BBC has today launched Radio 4's 2018 New Comedy Award, "to search for the most exciting new comedy acts the UK has to offer".

Entrants need to submit a five minute comedy routine and complete an application form on the BBC website before the closing date of Thursday 3 May 2018.

Sioned Wiliam, Commissioning Editor for Comedy on BBC Radio 4 says: "It is wonderful to welcome the New Comedy Award back to Radio 4 for the third year running. The competition has provided a springboard into the world of comedy for some fantastic new comic voices over the years, and I can't wait to see what 2018 brings."

Heidi Regan, winner of the BBC New Comedy Award 2017, says: "I'm still coming to terms with how helpful winning the award has been for me. It opened up doors in so many areas and gave me more confidence in my comedy. It was a really fun competition and a wonderful experience all round."

Previously at home on Radio 2, winners and finalists of the BBC New Comedy Award include Alan Carr, Peter Kay, Lee Mack, Sarah Millican, Russell Howard, Joe Lycett, Josie Long, and Nina Conti.

The winner of this year's BBC New Comedy Award will take home £1,000 and a 15 minute script commission from BBC Studios. All finalists will be mentored by the BBC Studios comedy team across the year and receive advice, guidance and the chance to write for and appear in slots across the BBC.

The best 50 entries will be selected for regional heats, taking place across June and July in locations in London, Manchester and Cardiff, and broadcast on BBC Radio 4 Extra.

The semi-finals will take place in August and will see ten comedians battle it out to secure a coveted place in the final. The final will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 4 on Sunday 12 August, where "an expert panel of judges, comprised of stalwarts of the comedy world, will join forces to crown the next winner".

Other recent winners of the BBC New Comedy Award include 2012's Lucy Beaumont, whose third series of To Hull And Back aired on Radio 4 this year; 2013's Steve Bugeja who has supported Russell Kane on his tour and contributed material to a number of BBC TV and radio comedy shows; 2014's Lee Ridley, whose sitcom Ability begins on Radio 4 next month; and 2015's Yuriko Kotani, who has supported Joe Lycett and Rob Delaney on tour, and made her TV acting debut in Pls Like on BBC Three in 2017.

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