Comedy Festival return is key moment for Harrogate's live events

Harrogate Comedy Festival is back on Monday for the first time since 2019 with a pledge to maintain the standards its set for more than a decade.

By Graham Chalmers
Thursday, 30th September 2021, 11:33 am
Updated Thursday, 30th September 2021, 11:44 am
Katherine Ryan is heading to the Harrogate Convention Centre on October 14th
Katherine Ryan is heading to the Harrogate Convention Centre on October 14th

Programmer Phil Lowe, who is also Harrogate Theatre’s associate director, said the annual event’s return for the 12th time was an important moment for the venue and the town’s arts scene.

He said: “After bringing the biggest names in stand-up and the best in rising talent to Harrogate for over a decade, Harrogate Comedy Festival is an important event for the town.

“We now have a standard of excellence to not just uphold but further exceed each year, and we don’t take that responsibility lightly.

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“We are on the lookout for great comedy all year round and we’ll continue to bring the very best to Harrogate going forward.”

Running from Monday, October 4 to Saturday, October 16, the line-up for this year’s Harrogate Comedy Festival includes Katherine Ryan, Bridgette Christie, Fascinating Idea and Jason Byrne.

Funny man Jimmy Carr launched proceedings last week at a sold out Royal Hall.

With Harrogate Theatre closed for a £1 million roof replacement, the town’s leading arts hub is reaching out to a range of venues in town to put on shows with the Royal Hall, Harrogate Convention Centre and Harrogate Library, Wesley Centre and the tipi at Cedar Court Hotel involved.

Since it was first launched in 2008, the theatre estimates that more than 55% of their audience have travelled from outside of Harrogate, equating to an increased footfall of almost 40,000 people and generating significant secondary spend in the town.

Supported by regular sponsors, the festival has also helped Harrogate win a reputation for being the “comedy capital of the North”.

For this year’s festival, Harrogate Comedy Festival has partnered with both St George’s Hotel Harrogate and The Cedar Court Hotel Harrogate to bring audiences a range of special discounts.

Festival programmer Phil Lowe said: “We know it’s been a difficult time for all this year and we want to put the ha ha in Ha Ha Harrogate!”

Jimmy Carr may have already come and gone but among the shows to look out for are:

October 5th: Tim Vine, Royal Hall;

October 8th: Jason Byrne, Royal Hall;

October 9th: Bridget Christie, Royal Hall;

October 10th: Tez Ilyas, Cedar Court Tipi;

October 14th: Katherine Ryan, Convention Centre

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