Edinburgh Comedy Awards: 2018 nominees announced

The stand-ups fighting it out to have their show crowned best of the fest have been revealed

Article by Jamie Dunn | 22 Aug 2018

We’re on the final leg of the month of insanity that is the Edinburgh Fringe, and with the finishing line in sight things always perk up with the announcement of the festival’s annual Comedy Awards.

Ahir Shah, one of last year’s nominees, is in the running for his phenomenal show Duffer, which charts the journey of his grandmother from India to Wembley and back again, and Shah’s final visit to see her in late 2017. We called it “accessible, tender and considerably less guilt-inducing than similarly passionate and rousing Edinburgh shows.”

Kieran Hodgson is also no stranger to the Edinburgh Comedy Awards. He was nominated in 2015 and 2016, and he’ll be hoping third time’s the charm with his nomination for ‘75, which concerns Hodgson’s consternation that his mum voted to leave the European Union. We called ‘75 a “a bold, high-concept Brexit bust and has pathos to boot.”

The rest are first-time nominees. There’s Glenn Moore for the brilliantly titled Glenn Glenn Glenn, How Do You Like It, How Do You Like It; Felicity Ward for Busting a Nut (“an energetic, warm and consistently funny hour,” said our reviewer); Alex Edelman for Just For Us (we said: "an hour of glorious storytelling which is incredibly relevant, particularly to the anti-semitism row plaguing politics at present"); and Glasgow comedian Larry Dean for Bampot, of which we said “Dean’s skill for mimicry and a gift for storytelling underlines why he is an ever-rising star”.

Completing the list is Rose Matafeo’s Horndog – we dubbed the Kiwi standup “a sharp comedy mind brimming with potential”. If you fancy seeing any of these shows before the Fringe comes to a close on Monday, we recommend getting tickets quick-smart (or in the case of Shah's Free Festival show, starting to queue almost immediately).

The nominees for Best Newcomer were also announced today and include character comedian and Beasts alumno Ciarán Dowd for Don Rodolfo, which we called “an impression run riot and one that Dowd plays with masterfully”, and Russian-born comic Olga Koch, whose Flight blends slide-show and stand-up – we described the show as "unique, interesting and, most importantly, very funny". The full list of Best Newcomer nominees are below, along with the list of those nominated for the top award.

The winners will be announced at a lunchtime ceremony on Saturday 25 August, with £10,000 going to the Best Comedy Show and £5,000 for Best Newcomer.

Best Comedy Show nominees:

Ahir Shah: Duffer (Laughing Horse @ Cabaret Voltaire)
Alex Edelman: Just For Us (Pleasance Courtyard, Cabaret Bar)
Felicity Ward: Busting a Nut (Pleasance Courtyard, Pleasance Above)
Glenn Moore: Glenn Glenn Glenn, How Do You Like It, How Do You Like It (Just The Tonic at the Tron)
Kieran Hodgson:’75 (Pleasance Courtyard, Beneath)
Larry Dean: Bampot (Assembly Checkpoint)
Rose Matafeo: Horndog (Pleasance Courtyard, Pleasance Above)

Best Newcomer nominees:

Ciarán Dowd: Don Rodolfo (Pleasance Courtyard, Pleasance That)
Maisie Adam: Vague (Gilded Balloon, Teviot)
Olga Koch: Fight (Pleasance Courtyard, Pleasance This)
Sara Barron: For Worse (Just The Tonic at the Tron)
Sarah Keyworth: Dark Horse (Pleasance Courtyard, Bunker Two)
Sindhu Vee: Sandhog (Pleasance Courtyard, The Attic)