List of Australian comedians

This is a list of comedians who were born in Australia, or have spent part of their careers performing in Australia. Some of these are known by stage names; these alter egos are listed in brackets.









See also


  1. ^ Dellaram Vreeland, The Courier, retrieved 23 January 2016
  2. ^ Dellaram Vreeland, "Ash adds a third string to his bow", The Courier, Tuesday 2 July 2013 page 16
Australian comedy

Australian comedy (or Australian humour) refers to the comedy and humour performed in or about Australia or by the people of Australia. Australian humour can be traced to various origins, and today is manifested in a diversity of cultural practices and pursuits. Writers like Henry Lawson and Banjo Paterson helped to establish a tradition of laconic, ironic and irreverent wit in Australian literature, while Australian politicians and cultural stereotypes have each proved rich sources of comedy for artists from poet C. J. Dennis to satirist Barry Humphries to iconic film maker Paul Hogan, each of whom have given wide circulation to Australian slang.Vaudeville larrikinism in the style of Graham Kennedy and parochial satire and self-mockery has been a popular strain in Australian comedy, notably in the work of such as Norman Gunston (Garry McDonald), The D-Generation, Roy & HG and Kath & Kim. Acclaimed Australian comic character actors have included John Meillon, Leo McKern, Ruth Cracknell, Geoffrey Rush and Toni Collette. Sardonic political satire like that of The Chaser and social and cultural commentary provided by broadcasters like Clive James and Andrew Denton has been another hallmark. Multiculturalism has also contributed to a diversity in Australian comedy, from the work of migrant comedians like Mary Coustas and Anh Do to Aboriginal performers like Ernie Dingo. Australian stand up comedy has a wide following and the Melbourne Comedy Festival is a major international comedy event.

Brian McCarthy Memorial Moosehead Award

The Brian McCarthy Memorial Moosehead Award is a grant issued to Australian comedians wishing to premiere new works as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. It is named after Brian McCarthy, a young comedian and comedy producer killed in a car accident in 1987.Each year benefit performances are held in Melbourne (as part of the Comedy Festival) and Sydney, and the money raised is used to produce new shows by successful applicants, who are thus free to try out a new and exciting idea without worrying whether it will be "commercially viable". The Award is substantial, but rather than providing funds directly, the Moosehead association produces the show, organising everything from Festival registration to venue and equipment hire and marketing. It also provides access to professional photographers, publicists, directors and other resources typically too expensive for comedians.

The award is known as the "Moosehead" award as Moosehead beer was Brian McCarthy's favorite. His favorite song, I Heard It Through the Grapevine, is traditionally performed by the closing act of every Moosehead Award benefit show.

In recent years the Award has also received sponsorship from The Comedy Channel.


In a modern sense, comedy (from the Greek: κωμῳδία, kōmōidía) refers to any discourse or work generally intended to be humorous or amusing by inducing laughter, especially in theatre, television, film, stand-up comedy, or any other medium of entertainment. The origins of the term are found in Ancient Greece. In the Athenian democracy, the public opinion of voters was influenced by the political satire performed by the comic poets at the theaters. The theatrical genre of Greek comedy can be described as a dramatic performance which pits two groups or societies against each other in an amusing agon or conflict. Northrop Frye depicted these two opposing sides as a "Society of Youth" and a "Society of the Old." A revised view characterizes the essential agon of comedy as a struggle between a relatively powerless youth and the societal conventions that pose obstacles to his hopes. In this struggle, the youth is understood to be constrained by his lack of social authority, and is left with little choice but to take recourse in ruses which engender very dramatic irony which provokes laughter.Satire and political satire use comedy to portray persons or social institutions as ridiculous or corrupt, thus alienating their audience from the object of their humor. Parody subverts popular genres and forms, critiquing those forms without necessarily condemning them.

Other forms of comedy include screwball comedy, which derives its humor largely from bizarre, surprising (and improbable) situations or characters, and black comedy, which is characterized by a form of humor that includes darker aspects of human behavior or human nature. Similarly scatological humor, sexual humor, and race humor create comedy by violating social conventions or taboos in comic ways. A comedy of manners typically takes as its subject a particular part of society (usually upper-class society) and uses humor to parody or satirize the behavior and mannerisms of its members. Romantic comedy is a popular genre that depicts burgeoning romance in humorous terms and focuses on the foibles of those who are falling in love.

List of Australian stand-up comedians

This is a list of notable stand-up comedians from Australia.

List of comedians

A comedian is one who entertains through comedy, such as jokes and other forms of humour. Following is a list of comedians, comedy groups, and comedy writers.

Lists of comedians

The following are lists of comedians.

Stand-up comedy

Stand-up comedy is a comic style in which a comedian performs in front of a live audience, usually speaking directly to them. The performer is commonly known as a comic, stand-up comic, comedian, comedienne, stand-up comedian, or simply a stand-up. In stand-up comedy, the comedian gives the illusion that they are dialoguing, but in actuality, they are monologuing a grouping of humorous stories, jokes and one-liners, typically called a shtick, routine, or set. Some stand-up comedians use props, music or magic tricks

to enhance their acts. Stand-up comedy is stated to be the "freest form of comedy writing" that is normally regarded as an "extension of" the person performing. The improvisation of stand-up is often compared to jazz music. A comedian's process of writing is likened to the process of song writing. A comedian's ability to tighten their material has been likened to crafting a samurai sword.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.