Rising comedy stars searching for the next big talent

The search is underway to find the best new stand-up, sketch and digital comedians in the BBC New Comedy Awards and today the BBC has confirmed the prizes at stake and the locations for the six heats set to be broadcast on BBC Three later this year ahead of the final on BBC One.

Since the prestigious awards first aired in 1995, they have helped launch the careers of many of the UK’s best-loved comedians and this year includes two brand new categories for the very first time – Young Comic and Digital Comedian meaning as well as the Over 18’s category, there are more opportunities to get involved than ever before.

Previous winners include: Marcus Brigstock, Josie Long, Alan Carr, Nina Conte, Rhod Gilbert Tom Allen, Angela Barnes and Lucy Beaumont. The 2019 winner Janine Harouni is currently appearing in Buffering, co-created and co-written by Steve Bugeja, the 2013 winner.

The prizes are as follows:

Over 18s

£1,000 plus a paid commission to write and perform in a 30-minute audio pilot, mentored by a BBC Comedy Commissioner

Young Comic (15-17 year-olds)

£500 plus help with securing their first three paid gigs 

Digital Comedian

A paid commission for a comedy digital short for BBC Comedy 

The weekly regional heats will be broadcast on BBC Three and BBC One culminating in the final which will be broadcast on BBC One. 

The six heats will be held all across the UK in the following locations: 

South of England – Croydon

Midlands – Wolverhampton

North of England – Halifax

Wales – Swansea 

Scotland – Dundee

Northern Ireland – Portrush 

Head Judge and newly appointed BBC Young Person’s Comedy Laureate Mawaan Rizwan will be joined in each of these locations by a different host and panel of judges from these local areas including Dane Baptiste, Thanyia Moore, Josh Jones, Kiri Pritchard-McLean, Helen Bauer, Stephen Buchanan, Darren Harriott, Larry Dean, Shane Todd, Fern Brady and many more.

There’s still plenty of time to apply for the BBC New Comedy Awards as the closing date has been extended to 22nd August 2021 at 11.59pm.

To enter visit www.bbc.co.uk/newcomedyawards where terms and privacy notices can also be found.

The BBC New Comedy Awards is a Phil McIntyre Television production commissioned for BBC Three and BBC One by Shane Allen, former Director of Comedy at the BBC and Fiona Campbell, Controller, BBC Three. The producer is Lindsay Jex, and the Executive Producer is Lucy Ansbro. The Commissioning Editors for the BBC are Emily Allen and Harriet Murdoch.

Further information about the awards including transmission details will be announced in due courseB

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