Top ten stand up comedians for 2012 FEATURE

Over the last few years there has been an explosion of interest in stand-up comedy, thanks to the likes of Edinburgh's Festival Fringe, as well as comedy panel shows such as Mock The Week. 2012 promises to be a fabulous year for stand-up comedy, with many of Britain's best comedians taking to the stage at venues across Britain. BritEvents' Amanda Arnold takes a look at some of the best comedians touring this year.


Top ten stand up comedians for 2012


By Amanda Arnold
BritEvents Contributor

There seems to be a revival in stand-up comedy, thanks to comedy panel shows such as 8 Out Of Ten Cats, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, Have I Got News For You, QI and Mock The Week.

Comedy Panel shows are a great way of showcasing new comedians and with shows such as Michael Macintyre's Comedy Road Show and Jack Dee Live at the Apollo, old and new comedians are given the opportunity to perform in front of ready and waiting comedy fans.

2011 saw Lee Evans break records with his amazing 60-night UK arena stand-up show Roadrunner'. His DVD is now available and was filmed during his 5 nights at the O2 in London.

With more big names in stand-up comedy touring the UK this year, who will be the biggest comedian of 2012? Will anyone match the success that Lee Evans received last year?

BritEvents.com brings you our top ten of the best stand-up comedians touring the UK in 2012.

Billy Connelly

This Glaswegian comedian is widely regarded as first of the modern stand-ups that concentrate on observational humour rather than telling jokes.

Connelly, like many comedians, is almost as well known now for his acting work in films such as Mrs Brown, for which he was BAFTA nominated, The Man who Sued God and Muppet Treasure Island.

After almost 40 years as a comedian, Billy Connelly remains one of Britain's best loved comic performers.

Connelly, or the Big Yin' as he's known in Scotland, began his working life as a welder in his native Glasgow before becoming a folk singer and eventually a full-time comedian.

A performance on the Parkinson show propelled him into the national consciousness and his edgy, ribald style quickly earned him huge popularity.

Connelly later married actress and comedienne Pamela Stephenson after many years of co-habitation a move he claimed "saved my life".

After almost 40 years as a comedian Connelly remains one of Britain's best loved comic performers.

Tickets for Billy Connelly

Michael McIntyre

Michael McIntyre's big break came in 2006 at the Royal Variety Performance'. His debut DVD Live and Laughing' was the fastest selling DVD of all time, only to be bettered by his second DVD Hello Wembley' which sold over 1.4 million copies and was 2009's Christmas No.1 DVD.

In 2010 Michael was the youngest ever host of The Royal Variety Performance'.

2011 saw the comedian join the panel of judges on the hit ITV show Britain's Got Talent, for which he was widely criticised for.

Michael has now stepped down from his time on Britain's Got Talent' and has returned to what he does best.

Michael will be touring the UK during August, September and October 2012. All tickets available through BritEvents.com:

Tickets for Michael McIntyre

John Bishop

Liverpudlian stand up comedian John Bishop performed for the first time in October 2000, the following year Bishop made it to the final of all the major new act competitions which included So You Think You're Funny' and the BBC Comedy Awards.

John Bishop takes his new live show on the road from 21 September starting at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff.

Most of his material is drawn from real life experiences including those cringing moments of fatherhood, playing semi-professional football and his job as a nightclub doorman.

Most recently John has been a regular panellist on the hit Sky1 show A' League of Their Own' and has hosted his own stand-up/sketch show for the BBC called John Bishop's Britain'.

John Bishop takes his new live show on the road from 21 September starting at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff, tickets are available through BritEvents.com.

Tickets for John Bishop

Jimmy Carr

Jimmy Carr is one of the most original comedians on television, radio and stage. He is famous for his deadpan delivery and his dark humour.

Jimmy has appeared on many television programmes including Have I Got News For You', QI' and is the host of Out Of 10 Cats' , Jimmy has also been the presenter of Commercial Breakdown'.

As well as presenting and stand-up Jimmy is also a writer, his writing credits include the hilarious Bo'Selecta!, Meet Ricky Gervais and has contributed material for Lily Savage and Frank Skinner.

Jimmy Carr's brand new show for 2012-2013, Gagging Order', promises to be a hilarious night out, packed with clever jokes, one-liners.

Jimmy Carr is continually on tour throughout the year and has only five weeks off between touring.

His brand new show for 2012-2013 Gagging Order' promises to be a hilarious night out, packed with clever jokes, one-liners. Some clever, some rude and a few totally unacceptable.

BritEvents.com have Jimmy Carr tickets available starting with his Work in Progress' shows in January 2012.

Tickets for Jimmy Carr

Dara O'Briain

This Irish born comedian, now resident in the UK is probably best known as the host of the BBC comedy panel show Mock the Week.

O'Briain started performing stand up comedy whilst employed by Irish TV company RTE as a children's TV presenter, although his career really took off when he migrated to adult shows.

O'Briain has been a frequent performer at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and has been the host of as well as performer in the BBC's Live at the Apollo show.

O'Briain is known for his intelligent, dry observational style which shines through in his appearances in the BBC's Three man series of programmes featuring O'Briain and fellow comics Rory McGrath and Griff Rhys Jones.

Dara kick-starts his tour in Dublin on 12 January, tickets available through BritEvents.com.

Tickets for Dara O'Briain

Kevin Bridges

The hilarious Glaswegian Kevin Bridges is the fastest and youngest rising comedy star in the UK and has been performing from the age of 17. Since leaving school Kevin has been doing comedy gigs at the Stand Comedy club in Glasgow and has toured throughout the UK. At the age of just 18 he reached the final of Channel 5's So You Think You Are Funny' competition at the Edinburgh Fringe.

Kevin is about to embark on a new tour which kicks starts in Salisbury City Hall on 3 September.

His break into mainstream television came when he appeared on Michael McIntyres's Comedy Road Show' in 2009, which was seen by over 5 million viewers. Tickets for his 25 night run at the Edinburgh festival sold out within hours, with extra shows added which also sold out.

His debut DVD The Story So Far .Live in Glasgow was released in November 2010. Kevin is about to embark on a new tour which kicks starts in Salisbury City Hall on 3 September, tickets available through BritEvents.com

Tickets for Kevin Bridges

Alexei Sayle

Alexi Sayle hasn't performed any stand up comedy for 17 years but his angry style and razor sharp socio-political observations appear perfect for contemporary times.

Credited with being the father of alternative stand up comedy Sayle came to prominence in the 1980's with his particular brand of leftist anti-Thatcher humour that was ideal for its time.

Sayle, who was born and raised in Liverpool, hasn't performed any stand up comedy for 17 years but his angry style and razor sharp socio-political observations appear perfect for contemporary times.

Sayle was the first MC of the Comedy Store when it opened in 1979 and he established himself with his performances in the Comic Strip Presents, O.T.T. and the Young Ones.

Since then he has done straight acting work and has appeared with frequency on TV and radio, also releasing five comedy singles including the hit Ullo John! Gotta New Motor?

Tickets for Alexei Sayle

Frankie Boyle

The Glaswegian born comic has earned a reputation as the comedian most likely to offend with his disregard for established taboos, such as disability and extreme sexual content.

Boyle was born in Glasgow and developed an interest in stand up whilst studying to become a teacher. He has been a frequent panellist on TV shows such as 'Have I Got News for You','8 out of 10 Cats' and was a permanent panellist on BBC's 'Mock the Week' for seven series.

Boyle has been described as risqu, controversial and was dubbed by host Dara O'Briain as the dark heart of Mock the Week. Boyle writes a weekly column for The Sun in which he satirises the news, in the same vein as his stand up routines.

You can see Frankie Boyle touring the UK from July starting in Blackburn.

Tickets for Frankie Boyle

Omid Djalili

You can catch Omid Djalili touring the UK from 17 January starting in Milton Keynes.

A British Iranian comedian who first came to notice thanks to his performances at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in the late 1990's.

Djalili is best known for routines based upon his dual heritage, often starting off as a caricatured Iranian only to switch to educated, middle class Englishman, emphasising the danger of accepting cultural stereotypes.

Djalili has appeared on numerous TV comedy panel shows and has developed a significant career in cinema with roles in major movies such as Gladiator, Notting Hill and The Mummy and has recently performed in the West End.

You can catch Omid touring the UK from 17 January starting in Milton Keynes.

Tickets for Omid Djalili

Rhod Gilbert

Rhod's eagerly awaited brand new live show Rhod Gilbert: Man With The Flaming Battenberg Tattoo is due for release in November 2012.

Welsh comedy sensation Rhod Gilbert has had the most phenomenal few years, appearing regularly on Live At The Apollo' and Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow'. Rod has also hosted the hit television shows Have I Got News For You' and Never Mind The Buzzcocks'.

In 2010 Rod hosted his own show for BBC1 called Ask Rhod Gilbert. During these shows Rhod set out to answer as many questions as he could from the sublime to the ridiculous, with the help of special guests and regulars which included Greg Davies.

The eagerly awaited brand new live show Rhod Gilbert: Man With The Flaming Battenberg Tattoo is due for release in November 2012. His new live tour kick starts in Carlisle on 6 April 2012. Tickets to see Rhod are available through BritEvents.com.

Tickets for Rhod Gilbert



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