British Comedy Guide

BBC New Comedy Awards 2024 open for entries

Monday 20th May 2024, 10:46am

  • You have until 30th June to enter the BBC New Comedy Awards 2024
  • This year's prize will also include the chance to perform on the Red Nose Day TV show
  • Head judge Babatunde Aléshé says: "I can't wait to see what brand-new talent the UK has to offer this year"
BBC New Comedy Awards

Entry is now open for the BBC New Comedy Awards 2024, with the deadline for acts to put themselves forwards being 30th June.

This will be the 19th year of the contest which aims to find the best new UK live comedy performers. As in recent years, the heads will be televised on BBC Three and iPlayer and the final will be on BBC One and iPlayer.

This year's head judge has been revealed as Babatunde Aléshé. He will be joined on the judging panel at each of the six regional heats by a local comic and a TV comedy industry expert.

The BBC explains: "For those budding comedy superstars selected from the entry process, the regional heats await them. Each of the six regional finals will take place in September and will be televised weekly from 2nd October on BBC Three. The Grand Final will be screened on BBC One in November and feature a special performance by 2023 NCA winner Joe Kent-Walters, AKA Frankie Monroe."

BBC New Comedy Awards. Image shows left to right: Chantel Nash, Paddy Young, Dan Tiernan, Josh Pugh, Joe Kent-Walters, Rosie Jones, Zoe Lyons, Jin Hao Li, Darren Harriott, Dean T Beirne, Hester Ectomy
BBC New Comedy Awards. Image shows left to right: Chantel Nash, Paddy Young, Dan Tiernan, Josh Pugh, Joe Kent-Walters, Rosie Jones, Zoe Lyons, Jin Hao Li, Darren Harriott, Dean T Beirne, Hester Ectomy

The winner will receive a paid commission to write and perform their own 30-minute audio pilot under the mentorship of a BBC Comedy Commissioner, plus a trophy and £1,000 cash. In addition, this year's winner will get to perform live on the BBC as part of Comic Relief's Red Nose Day night of TV in March 2025 - a campaign which will also celebrate the charity's 40th anniversary.

The BBC says: "The talent search encourages all types of comedians to enter and everyone who applies has the chance to follow in the footsteps of recent winners, Joe Kent-Walters, Dan Tiernan and Anna Thomas - all of whom, since winning, have all gone on to be signed by high profile agents, have pilots in development or production and are taking shows to the Edinburgh Festival. Last year over 1200 people applied for the search."

Babatunde Aléshé says: "I'm over the moon to be asked by the BBC to be their Head Judge for the New Comedy Awards. This prestigious competition has seen a raft of amazing comics taking part over the years. I can't wait to see what brand-new talent the UK has to offer this year."

Jon Petrie, BBC Director of Comedy, comments: "Some of the biggest names in British comedy have come up through the BBC New Comedy Awards over the years, and it continues to be fertile ground for finding the big stand-up names of the future. I'm sure 2024 will unearth some brilliant new talent, if you've thought about applying - do it!"

Joe Kent-Walters notes: "It has been such an incredible experience this past year. My life has changed in ways I could only have dreamed of. It's still such a surreal feeling, it took a while to sink in that I had won. I think the icing on the cake to round it all off will be performing at this year's Grand Final and handing the baton on to this year's winner."

The competition is open to new comedians aged 18 or over with less than four years experience on the comedy circuit. To enter you'll need to film and upload five minutes worth of material, to be sent as a video file.

To enter visit www.bbc.co.uk/newcomedyawards

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