British Comedy Guide
BBC New Comedy Awards 2021.

BBC New Comedy Awards 2021 open for entries

The BBC New Comedy Awards - the nationwide talent search to find the best new comedians - is now open for 2021 entries.

The deadline to enter is Sunday 15th August 2021.

Since they first launched in 1995, the prestigious awards have helped launch the careers of many of the UK's best-loved stand-up comedians.

This year, for the first time in its history, the awards will have two new categories, Young Comic (for 15, 16 and 17 year-olds) and Digital Comedian, so there's even more opportunity to get involved.

Notably, the competition is also moving from radio to TV. The regional heats will be televised on BBC Three and BBC One and the final will be broadcast on BBC One.

The newly announced Young People's Comedy Laureate, Mawaan Rizwan, will be the Head Judge for the awards and will be joined at each heat by a different panel of local celebrity judges who will select a winner to make it to the final show. Each regional heat will be compered by a top local comic.

The main prize for the over-18s category is £1,000 and a paid commission to write and perform in a 30-minute audio pilot, mentored by a BBC comedy commissioner. The Young Comic (Under 18s) prize is £500 and help with securing their first three paid gigs. The Digital Prize is a paid commission for a comedy digital short for BBC Comedy.

To enter the main category, you should create and record your own comedy routine. This could be stand-up, musical or character comedy (if it's sketches, you should submit to the digital comedy category instead). You'll need to film and upload 5 minutes of material (maximum of 6 minutes) to be sent as a video file. Your material must not have been previously broadcast on television or radio and must be original and self-written.

The Young Comedian category is open to entrants who are aged 15 to 17. For your entry, you should create and record your own comedy routine. This could be stand-up, musical, character or sketch. You'll need to film and upload 3 minutes of material (maximum of 4 minutes) to be sent as a video file.

The Digital Comedy category involves recording your own video comedy idea that would work on BBC iPlayer and other social platforms. The BBC explains: "This could be experimental character comedy, pranks, musical comedy, character formats or a sketch, anything that works on video and isn't meant for a live audience. We're not looking for high value production values, it's the idea that counts - it could be easily shot on a phone." You'll need to film and upload between 1 to 3 minutes of material to be sent as a video file.

For the online entry form and full terms and conditions visit the BBC website

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