Lost Voice Guy wins BBC New Comedy Award 2014

Wednesday 17th December 2014, 4:57pm


BBC New Comedy Award. Image shows from L to R: Lee Ridley, Patrick Kielty. Copyright: BBC.Lee Ridley, a stand-up comedian with cerebral palsy who performs under the name Lost Voice Guy, has won the BBC New Comedy Award 2014.

The Newcastle-based comic won the public vote as the final was broadcast on BBC Radio 2 this afternoon, streamed live from The Comedy Store in London with host Patrick Kielty.

Ridley wins a £1000 cash prize, plus guidance from industry experts and the chance for a commission from BBC Radio Comedy.

The comedian cannot talk, so delivers his gags via a text-to-speech app on his iPad. On accepting the prize, he remarked that, for the first time in his life, he was "speechless in every sense of the word". He concluded his speech by telling all those who voted for him: "You've made a disabled man very happy, so Santa should be good to you all."

This year's competition received over 750 entries from across the nation with 80 comedians selected to perform in the regional heats broadcast on Radio 4 Extra since July.

The other comedians to make it to the final were Thomas Ward from London, Hari Sriskantha from Barnet, Brennan Reece from Lancashire, Tom Little from Cumbria and Amir Khoshokhan from Sutton.

The BBC New Comedy Award was first launched in 1995. Previous finalists have included Alan Carr, Peter Kay, Lee Mack, Marcus Brigstocke, Russell Howard, Rhod Gilbert and Shappi Khorsandi. In 2003 the awards were scrapped, but were revived via Radio 2 in 2011 with the three winners since the re-launch (Angela Barnes, Lucy Beaumont and Steve Bugeja) all having now become full-time stand-up comedians.

Below is a video clip of Lost Voice Guy performing in the semi-final stage of the competition:

Can't see a video here? Watch this clip on bbc.co.uk

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