Glasgow Comedy Festival kicks off with 400 shows in 40 venues

The 2023 festival will see hundreds of comedy stars take to venues across the city to amuse audiences.

Glasgow Comedy Festival kicks off with shows from Paul Black, Frankie Boyle and Gary Tank Commander

The Glasgow International Comedy Festival (GICF) has officially begun, with the city set to host around 400 shows in the next 19 days.

The festival, which has this year launched a new award in the name of Sir Billy Connolly, has been an annual affair in Glasgow for around 20 years.

This year will see world-class Scottish talent, as well as international comedians, take to the stage in around 40 venues.

The roster includes sell-out shows by Paul Black, Frankie Boyle, Kaye Adams, Maisie Adam, Fred MacAulay, Fern Brady, Gary Tank Commander, Scott Agnew and Kieran Hodgson at venues such as The King’s Theatre, Oran Mor, The Stand, The Griffin and Van Winkle’s West End.

Other highlights, which audiences can still snap up tickets for, include Taskmaster star Phil Wang, GICF veteran Jason Byrne, Ted Lasso’s Nick Mohammed, Father Ted’s Ardal O’Hanlon, Radio 4’s Mark Steel, Fringe Best Newcomer 2022 Nominee Emmanuel Sonubi and more.

Andy Murray's 'brother' will perform at the Glasgow festival with Judy Murray.

There are a whole host of themes and topics that are set to be in the spotlight as comedians take to the stage such as parenting, relationships and political humour.

The festival will also showcase the humorous side of experiences that are normally no laughing matter such as surviving cancer, being in prison, tackling the menopause and undergoing heart surgery, to name a few.

“Audiences are clearly prepared for lots of laughter during this festival, with so many of our shows already selling out before today,” said Krista MacDonald, festival director.

“We really want to thank the people of Glasgow who are supporting such a major event in the city, with such enthusiasm.

Susie McCabe performing at the Kings Theatre, Glasgow, for the Glasgow International Comedy Festival 2022.

“We’re proud to showcase the best that Glasgow has to offer as the funniest city in the world, whilst welcoming some of our best loved comedy stars to the city for a jam-packed 19 days.”

Glasgow Life chair Bailie Annette Christie said: “Glasgow International Comedy Festival is always a much-anticipated highlight of the city’s dynamic events calendar.

“Celebrating Glasgow’s renowned love of humour, the festival also shines the spotlight on the city as a big name act on the worldwide comedy stage.

“The packed programme this year’s GICF offers will showcase a fantastic variety of established and emerging talent, so audiences from the city and further afield are in for a real treat and some exceptional live entertainment.”

Tickets can be purchased from

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