Leicester Comedy Festival Gala Preview Night.

photo credit: Leicester Comedy Festival Facebook page. 
photo credit: Leicester Comedy Festival Facebook page. 
During February Leicester are treated to 800 Comedy Shows across 19 days when the yearly Leicester Comedy Festival arrives in town. In its 25th year in 2018 the festival is England's largest and longest-running comedy festival, actually beating the famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The foundations of this festival are themselves worth celebrating. Back in 1994, the festival was created by Events Management students at De Montfort University, little did they realise that 25 years on it's become a household event in the city. 

The festival brings together some big names to its bill, Katherine Ryan and Harry Hill are just an example. The festival also is the place to see first hand some comedian stars of tomorrow. Jason Manford and Johnny Vegas actually won prizes at the festival whilst on their way to becoming the big names in Comedy they are today. Over 70 venues across the city get involved in the festival and play host to the shows, this year with over 800 shows to see there's something for everyone, even including the kids. 

The festival recognises how expensive it can be to see a lot of shows in such a short space of time so there are loads of FREE SHOWS available in their programme that you can check out. This option is great for those who hadn't ever experienced a Comedy show before and want to get a feel for it. With many of the free performances, they operate on a 'Pay What You Want' scheme, where you can enter a show for free and put money in a bucket if you enjoyed it. Obviously, I would encourage you to donate money to this festival when you attend. 

I managed to get a flavor for what to expect from this year's festival at the Gala Preview Night at DeMontfort Hall. They put out all of the stops to ensure that the audience had an enjoyable night. Hosted by Ed Byrne, 8 acts who were different one another took to the stage to give us a snippet of their material or what we could expect if we attended one of their shows during the festival. 

There was nobody in the bill with whom I didn't enjoy, all of the acts knew exactly how to work a crowd and were naturally great fun to watch. Some of them definitely made me laugh more than others but the Gala Preview had something for everyone to enjoy. During the evening we had short performances from Alasdair Beckett-KingBilal ZafarChris Norton WalkerChris WashingtonFlo and JoanMatt RichardsonSarah Keyworth and Tom Lucy









The Leicester Comedy Festival runs from 07 - 25 Feb across various venues in and around the Leicestershire region. You can find out more about the festival and what it has to offer over on their website. You can also pick up a free brochure from pretty much everywhere across the city too!

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