Comedy Festival reveals 2023 line-up

Lindsey Santoro

Birmingham Comedy Festival returns this October for 10-days of performances, across the city.

Running from Friday 6 to Sunday 15 October 2023, the award-winning comedy festival boasts appearances from Murder From Successville’s Tom Davis (6 Oct, Town Hall), Jason Byrne (8 Oct, Town Hall), and Jenny Eclair (14 Oct, The Old Rep).

Other highlights include former Red Dwarf actor/comedian Norman Lovett (11 Oct, Irish Centre), Seann Walsh (5-6 Oct, The Old Rep), Robin Ince (7 Oct, The Mockingbird), Jamie Hutchinson (8 Oct, The Glee Club), and Paul Foot (13 Oct, The Glee Club).

Angelos Epithemiou, Eshaan Akbar, Carl Hutchinson, Rhys James, Jack Gleadow, Connor Burns, Jamie Hutchinson, Alfie Moore, and Aurie Styla also appear.

Lauded playwright Tim Firth has two productions in the festival: firstly, the acclaimed Calendar Girls The Musical (3-7 Oct, The Alexandra), a glitzy hit with music by Gary Barlow, and a cast that includes Marti Webb, Lyn Paul, Amy Robbins, Tanya Franks and Maureen Nolan; and secondly, the sharp-witted Sheila’s Island (11-14 Oct, Old Joint Stock Theatre).

As always, comedians from the West Midlands feature prominently, with shows from Warwickshire rising star Josh Pugh (10 Oct, The Glee Club), Brum-based Leicester Mercury Comedian of The Year Eric Rushton (7 Oct, The Glee Club), and the Edinburgh Comedy Award nominated Rob Kemp (7 Oct, 1000 Trades), plus Richard Dadd, Danny Clives, Tal Davies, and Damon Conlan, as well as leading improvisation groups Jumprov!, Behind The Headlines, and Improv Wolves.

There’s also returning regulars, including the region’s biggest comedy prize, the Birmingham Comedy Festival Breaking Talent Award (6 Oct, The Glee Club), in which the best West Mids acts compete for the title; two Free Half-Dayers across successive Sundays (8 and 15 Oct, Cherry Reds and The Victoria), with one hour shows from James Cook, Lindsey Santoro, Hannah Weetman, Tom Little and Mary Flanigan and others; and a triple-bill of Laurel and Hardy classics (13 Oct, West Mids Police Museum + 15 Oct, Stourbridge Town Hall).

Continuing the classic comedy theme, the festival is also celebrating the centenary of the birth of Black Country born comedy writer Larry Stephens with a one-off performance of two of his scripts from radio cult The Goon Show (8 Oct, Symphony Hall) – the series which launched the careers of Spike Milligan, Peter Sellers and Harry Secombe in the 1950s.

Birmingham Comedy Festival runs from Friday 6 to Sunday 15 October 2023. For more details, see:


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