For the past two weeks (4th – 12th of November), Nottingham’s 8th Annual Comedy Festival has been providing visitors with a multitude of comedy acts across a variety of venues.

With over 100 shows involving big names, such as Billy Connelly and Lee Nelson, and shining a light on upcoming talent, the festival has given residents the opportunity to experience exciting comedy from their doorstep.

Helen Stead, the organiser and head of the Nottingham Comedy Festival, started the event in 2009 with her friend Rachel, soon after they had graduated from the University of Lincoln.

The two friends, who were comedy enthusiasts, created the comedy festival after realising there was nothing quite like it at the time.

Helen Stead explains the purpose of the Nottingham Comedy Festival and what type of shows the event has to offer.

Spanky Van Dykes, one of the venues involved for the Nottingham Comedy Festival.
Spanky Van Dykes, one of the venues involved for the Nottingham Comedy Festival.

 

The Nottingham Comedy Festival also aims to raise money for the National Autistic Society, after a member of the NCF team, Steve, was diagnosed with Asperger’s earlier this year.

After being diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, Steve got in contact with the N.A.S and they really helped him to understand his condition. For that reason, we want to help support the charity.
Helen Stead, Head of Nottingham Comedy Festival.

Doug Segal, who has won both the ‘Three Weeks Editors’ award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and ‘Best Cabaret Act’ at the Brighton Fringe in 2012, performed for the first time at the Nottingham Comedy Festival.

His show, ‘I can make you feel good’, at Spanky Van Dykes, incorporates both ‘mind reading’ and stand up comedy.

Doug explains the psychology behind his engaging show.

Doug Segal invites guests on the stage at Spanky Van Dykes.
Doug Segal invites guests on the stage at Spanky Van Dykes.

The well known comedian believes that comedy events in smaller cities such as Nottingham, are a great way to get great comedy acts together in one place.

If you’ve got a festival like this, which features dozens and dozens of great acts, you don’t get to see these people unless they come to you, so I think that’s great.
Doug Segal, Comedian.

Up and coming comedian, Ben Shannon, performed at two events during the Nottingham Comedy Festival this year. In 2011, he played at the Nottingham Comedy Festival for the first time when he was only 18 years old. His ‘Stand-Up’ comedy act involves a variety of jokes, aimed to please different tastes of humour in the audience.

Ben Shannon performing at the Nottingham Comedy Festival.
Ben Shannon performing at the Nottingham Comedy Festival.

Having experienced the festival twice, Ben thinks the event is a great way to get new audiences involved with Nottingham’s comedy scene.

 

With the last two nights of the Comedy Festival underway, the 8th year of the event has exceeded residents expectations, by providing fantastic entertainment whilst bringing the community of Nottingham together.