Leicester Comedy Festival is celebrating record box office returns, with sales up 22% on last year, reinforcing its position as the leading UK festival dedicated to comedy.
This year more than 800 individual events took place in 62 venues across the city, over the festival’s 19 days. 80,000 tickets were sold via the main box office and a further 35,000 people attended free events. Audience research shows that around a third of all attendees travel to the festival from across the UK helping to generate the festival’s economic benefit to Leicestershire at over £3million.
More shows sold this year out than ever before, including: Adam Buxton, Johnny Vegas, Jimmy Carr, Sue Perkins, Stewart Lee, Ken Dodd, Stuart Goldsmith, Sooty, Mark Watson, Dane Baptiste, Tony Law, Tom Allen, Joe Lycett, Ed Gamble, Jamali Maddix, Robin Ince, Paul Foot, Joel Dommett, Lloyd Griffith, Andrew Ryan, James Acaster, Paul Sinha, Abandoman, Norman Lovett, Paul Currie, John Shuttleworth.
And it’s not just the household names; the festival also produces unique events, many of which have gone on to become cult hits, and in the case of The UK Pun Championships, even developing its own national day, #UKPunday, which trended throughout Monday 13th February, generating 30,000,000 impressions on Twitter.
The unique events that sold out this year include: a Q&A with Romesh Ranganathan, the Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year competition, Silver Stand Up competition, The UK Pun Championships, Comedy in the Dark for Kids, Hotel D’Comedie, the @deadmonarchs exhibition and the BIG Weekends, which see the festival expanding into Leicestershire towns Loughborough & Melton, featuring Sean Walsh & Jon Richardson.
Festival Director Geoff Rowe founded the festival as a student at De Montfort University, with just 21 comedians taking part over 9 days, including Matt Lucas and Harry Hill. It has since grown to be one of the world’s biggest comedy festivals, and the longest running in the UK.
Geoff Rowe, Founder and Director of Leicester Comedy Festival, said: “Leicester Comedy Festival 2017 has surpassed all expectations to become the most successful of our 24 year history. I am very grateful to all the people who make the festival possible; the festival team, the performers, our venues and the audiences who often travel from around the UK. We’ve had a fantastic year and will now get some sleep before we start planning for our 25th festival in 2018.”
Leicester Comedy Festival 2018 will take place from the 7-25 February. For more information visit www.comedy-festival.co.uk