DLT Entertainment, Sky, And The Victoria Wood Foundation Sponsor The Edinburgh Comedy Awards
London: 7th July 2023: The Edinburgh Comedy Awards’ long-standing Director Nica Burns is delighted to announce today that three amazing comedy partners - Sky, DLT Entertainment and The Victoria Wood Foundation - have joined her in sponsoring the prestigious Awards to enable them to go ahead this summer.
Together they will sponsor the biggest prizes in live comedy: Sky Best Comedy Show, DLT Entertainment Newcomer Award and the Panel Prize, which this year will be called the Victoria Wood Award.
The Awards celebrate the best of both up-and-coming comedy and brand-new performers at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, finding and spotlighting the next generation of talent and awarding comedy excellence across all genres of comedy. Over the years the Awards have been a springboard for outstanding comedy performers who have gone on to become household names at home and abroad.
Nica Burns says: “In only five weeks, three companies who are as passionate about comedy as I am have joined me to enable the 41st Edinburgh Comedy Awards to go ahead this August. I cannot thank Sky, DLT Entertainment and the Victoria Wood Foundation enough for responding so swiftly and decisively in the true spirit of the Fringe. It’s an amazing commitment from them and a wonderful endorsement of the Awards’ place in the fabric of Edinburgh. So it’s business as usual for 2023 and plans for the long term future of the Comedy Awards are speeding ahead. To all the comics and those in the comedy industry who have voiced so passionately how much they love the Edinburgh Comedy Awards, our heartfelt thanks.”
Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society adds: “It is absolutely wonderful news to hear that the Edinburgh Comedy Awards will go ahead as usual this year. The Awards are such a vital part of the Fringe ecology and an important source of motivation, validation and support for the comedy sector. Congratulations to Nica and the ECA team, and I would like to add our sincere thanks to the funders who have had the foresight to step in with essential backing. This gives certainty for this year and time for the team to shape a sustainable future for the awards. Happy Fringe ‘23.”
Donald Taffner Jr., President of DLT Entertainment says: “Comedy has been part of my life since childhood. I have been coming to the Edinburgh Fringe for years to watch comedy, always seeing one more show than the previous year – 126 shows last year. I love the Fringe. As part of that, I have enjoyed the buzz the Edinburgh Comedy Awards bring to it so when I heard they needed support to make them happen this year, I reached out to Nica immediately. I feel privileged to be part of making the ECAs happen this year.”
A Sky spokesman says: "Sky are delighted to sponsor the Edinburgh Comedy Awards this year, ensuring they can continue to be an integral part of the Edinburgh Fringe landscape. The Comedy Awards are massively important to the whole comedy community, with a more than forty-year history of identifying and nurturing the best new comedic talent, as the list of household names amongst past winners is testament to. At Sky, we are relentless in searching for the next generation of performers who'll entertain, surprise and, most importantly, make us laugh.”
The Victoria Wood Foundation said: “Victoria Wood was a wonderful human being and an extraordinary talent. A brilliant performer, writer, musician, song writer and director, she started in small spaces and moved on to create hugely successful television series including Dinnerladies and Acorn Antiques as well as serious work such as Housewife 49. Her sketch show, Victoria Wood as Seen on TV, was one of the most successful comedy series of the time and she broke records with her live stand-up shows, including regular, three week sold-out seasons at the Royal Albert Hall. Immensely generous in spirit, she had an incredible eye for new talent, often giving young actors with comedic talent their first opportunities in television. We are delighted in the spirit of Victoria Wood to be supporting emerging comedy talent at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe through these fantastic Awards.”
The Awards Judging Panel and scouts operate an open-access, independent, thorough, inclusive and fair judging process comprising senior members of the comedy industry, comedy critics and comedy fans representing the public. The prize money for Best Comedy Show is £10,000 with £5,000 each for the Best Newcomer and the Panel Prize winner.
The Shortlist will be announced on Wednesday 23rd August, the Nominees’ photo-call will be on Thursday 24th August. The 41st Edinburgh Comedy Awards ceremony will take place on Saturday 26th August. Further information about the Panel for the Awards, and plans beyond 2023, will be revealed in due course.
A full history of the winners and nominees, eligibility rules and all other details about the Awards can be found at: www.comedyawards.co.uk
Lily Hawkins, on behalf of DLT Entertainment: Lily.Hawkins@premiercomms.com | +44 200 7292 5094
Charlie Wainwright, on behalf of DLT: email@example.com | +44 020 7292 7372
For Edinburgh Comedy Awards please contact:
Anya Noakes, on behalf of DLT: firstname.lastname@example.org | +44 020 07973 36334
NOTES TO EDITORS
About DLT Entertainment:
With headquarters in London and New York, DLT Entertainment Ltd. is engaged in every aspect of television distribution and production around the world, as well as stage production in the US and in the UK where it owns London’s Shaftesbury Theatre Theatre and talent representation business with ownership positions in MMB Creative, The Soho Agency, Blue Book Artist Management, Andrew Roach Talent and The Galton Agency.
Founded in 1963 as a distribution company by Don Taffner Sr., the company added television production to its portfolio in 1977. It has enjoyed terrific success in its fifty-six year history with legendary hits on both sides of the Atlantic including the multiple award-winning and BBC Trust praised sitcom My Family, As Time Goes By, Three’s Company, Too Close For Comfort and Meet My Folks. In addition, DLT has built a reputation as a leading distribution company with classics such as The Benny Hill Show, The World at War, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Cinema Europe: The Other Hollywood, The Russ Abbot Show, Michel LeGrand and Friends, and Dara O’Briain’s Go 8 Bit.
In 2018 DLT expanded its own production activities in the United Kingdom through the acquisition of Vera Productions whose past productions include Getting On, Million Pound Jewellers, Bremner, Bird, and Fortune, and numerous Dispatches such as President Trump’s Dirty Secrets and Politicians for Hire: Cashing in on Brexit. 2020 saw further expansion with an investment in Mark Watson’s Impatient Productions.
2020 saw the creation of a podcasting division with the release of When No One’s Watching featuring Richardson & Matt Willis and recently produced Very Modern Quests starring Alice Levine's for Audible.
DLT is also a significant player in the artist management business with key investments in The Soho Agency, Milburn Browning Associates, Blue Book Artist Management, The Galton Agency, and Andrew Roach Talent.
The Shaftesbury Theatre in London, where & Juliet continues its West End run, is owned by DLT.
About Edinburgh Comedy Awards:
The inaugural Comedy Award winners were The Cambridge Footlights in 1981, whose line-up included Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie and Emma Thompson. Other winners whose careers have soared since carrying off the awards range from the late Sean Hughes, still the youngest ever winner at age 24, to Rose Matafeo, Hannah Gadsby, John Robins, Jordan Brookes, Richard Gadd, Bridget Christie, Russell Kane, Richard Ayoade, Al Murray, The League of Gentlemen, Dylan Moran, Jenny Eclair, Harry Hill, Lee Evans, Steve Coogan and Frank Skinner. Our 2022 winners were Sam Campbell and Lara Ricote.
Past nominees include London Hughes, James Acaster, Nish Kumar, Sara Pascoe, Romesh Ranganathan, Darren Harriott, Ivo Graham, Ahir Shah, Lucy Beaumont, Mae Martin , Seann Walsh, Greg Davies, Sarah Millican, John Bishop, Russell Howard, Sophie Willan, Chris Addison, Reginald D Hunter, Adam Hills, Jimmy Carr, Omid Djalili, Noel Fielding, Sean Lock, Lee Mack, Peter Kay, Graham Norton, Bill Bailey and Eddie Izzard.