Danny Garnell wins So You Think You're Funny? 2018

Gilded Balloon's SYTYF crowns Danny Garnell its 31st champion

Feature by Polly Glynn | 27 Aug 2018
  • Danny Garnell

The prestigious So You Think You're Funny? competition, which has launched famous names from Dylan Moran to Aisling Bea, was won last night by South Londoner and father of two, Danny Garnell. Effortlessly confident, Garnell filled his tight seven minutes with jokes about his wedding’s first dance and a spell at one of Disneyland’s rarely seen attractions. His charming, down-to-earth style rightly won him the title.

18-year-old Liam Farrelly won second place. His deadpan presence was a real hit with the room, as he detailed the struggles of living with his mother who has MS. Hailing from Glasgow, he's already making waves on the local scene. Farrelly will undoubtedly be called the next Kevin Bridges for years to come.

Following Farrelly, Aussie Bec Melrose and ‘Big boy’ Joe Hobbs both finished in joint third. Melrose, who recently won Australia’s biggest open-mic competition, delivered a strong set about hyper-realistic sex robots and backpackers being taken aback by the beauty of Cambodia. Hobbs, fresh from the BBC New Comedy Award heats, offered seven minutes about dating mishaps when you’re 6ft 9.

Kudos should be given to all the finalists of this year’s competition though: Martin Durchov with his Bulgarian-based material, Natalie Loh’s stories of adapting to UK life, Robert de Niro impersonator Shane Clifford, Chelsea Birkby’s energetic set about the perks of mental health and insomniac Patrick Healy’s troubles with his high-achieving family. The evening was expertly compered by former SYTYF contestant Zoe Lyons and the celebrity judge this year was 2002 finalist Rhod Gilbert.

Each of the contestants who placed win a cash prize, whilst Garnell takes home £2,500, a chance to perform at Montreal Just for Laughs Festival, Magners Comedy Festival in Singapore and a future Fringe run at the Gilded Balloon.

So You Think You're Funny? Grand Final played at Gilded Balloon, Teviot Row House (Debating Hall) on 23 Aug http://www.gildedballoon.co.uk