Calling all comedy friends and fans – mark your calendars – the Melbourne International Comedy Festival is taking over town from 29 March to 23 April 2023.
Showcasing a world of comedy, 2023 will see a back-to-business number of top international performers grace our stages. Melbourne International Comedy Festival People’s Choice Award winners Urzila Carlson (Sth Africa/NZ) and Daniel Sloss (SCO) join much loved internationals Mark Watson (UK), David O’Doherty (Ireland), Josie Long (UK), Larry Dean (SCO), Arj Barker (USA) and Phil Wang (UK/Malaysia) – and that’s only the start.
The sold-out Gala, proudly supporting Oxfam, will kick off 2023 with the best of the best, performing at the iconic Palais Theatre. One week later, the Opening Night Comedy Allstars Supershow will officially launch the Festival, with a one-night-only special event, showcasing some of the biggest names in comedy. Also back in 2023, two of the most popular events on the Festival calendar – The 33rd Annual Great Debate and Upfront.
Explore Melbourne’s latest arts and stage events, exhibitions, productions and performances here.
Discover new solo acts from British cabaret performer and comedian Jordan Gray (UK) who brings us the Australian Premiere of her Edinburgh Comedy Award-nominated show about transgender identity; Edinburgh Fringe Best Newcomer nominee Leo Reich (UK), with his smash debut show Literally Who Cares?!; and the 2022 Edinburgh Fringe Best Newcomer winner, and recipient of the 2021 Funny Women Award, Lara Ricote (Mexico) with her debut hour about race, gender and disability. Comedy Zone Asia is back with stars from Singapore, India, Malaysia and Indonesia. We welcome back TV personality and comedian Rosie Jones (UK) and actor, writer, comedian and poet, Tim Key (UK); as well as fresh musings and rants from comedy genius, Paul Foot(UK); plus Carl Donnelly (UK), Stephen K Amos (UK), Georgie Carroll (UK), Melanie Bracewell (NZ), Guy Montgomery (NZ), Troy Hawke (UK) and Chris Parker (NZ) – with more to be announced soon!
Audiences can anticipate new shows from 2022 Edinburgh Fringe Best Comedy Show winner Sam Campbell, festival favourites Kitty Flanagan, Luke Heggie, Geraldine Hickey, Wil Anderson, Lizzy Hoo, Dane Simpson, Michelle Brasier, Cal Wilson, Reuben Kaye, Sammy J, Dilruk Jayasinha, Aboriginal Comedy Allstars and Sam Simmons.
Other local faces set to bring audiences razor-sharp shows include Anne Edmonds, Lano & Woodley, Mel Buttle, Nikki Britton, Peter Helliar, Rove McManus, Tommy Little, Lawrence Mooney, Sami Shah, Damian Callinan, Ivan Aristeguieta, Lloyd Langford, Dave Hughes, Dave Thornton, Nath Valvo, Scout Boxall, Rhys Nicholson, Ali McGregor, Daniel Connell, Steen Raskopoulos, Greg Larsen and more.
Not to mention, much-loved annual events returning next year include the Festival Club, free-family program The (Very) Big Laugh Out, school holiday fun at Comedy Club for Kids and the discovery of the next big things at the RAW Comedy, Deadly Funny and Class Clowns National Grand Finals. The Festival’s Neighbourhood Sessions will venture back to the ‘burbs for a third year, with a carefully curated mix of familiar and fresh faces.
Comedy fans can get in early with tickets to a number of artists now on sale, with more shows added weekly. And if you know someone who loves a laugh there’s no better Christmas gift than a Melbourne International Comedy Festival Gift Voucher!
For all tickets, gift vouchers and up to date program information, visit comedyfestival.com.au.