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Comedy superstars get ready for Darlington festival


Some of the most famous names in British comedy  – including Pete Firman, Stewart Francis and Patrick Monahan – are warming up for the biggest stand up festival ever held in Darlington.

The Darlington Comedy Festival, hosted by entertainment business Hilarity Bites, will run throughout July across several venues including Darlington Civic Theatre, Inside Out, The Art Centre and The Forum.

As well as some of the best known British performers, the festival includes the best in North East talent alongside acts from Canada, New Zealand and the United States.

Although the likes of Jason Cook, Chris Ramsey and Show Me the Funny winner Patrick Monahan have already been confirmed, a number of equally famous names are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

The event kicks off on 2 July with a charity gala at Darlington Civic Theatre in aid of local good causes Daisy Chain, Butterwick Hospice Care, St Theresa’s Hospice and Darlington Association on Disability.

It will then continue for the rest of the month, taking in different strands of entertainment such as comedy for kids, musical comedy, sketch and improv – and will also include shows that are free to attend.

Hilarity Bites owner Neil Jollie said: “The North East comedy scene is really starting to take off, but compared to other areas of the UK we don’t have a stand-out comedy festival, which is why I wanted to bring this festival to the region and my home town in particular. It will be a great showcase for the town and should provide a welcome boost to the visitor economy.”

It is hoped that the event will attract over 5,000 visitors to Darlington during the month, alongside more than 50 comedians who will perform 21 shows across multiple venues.

Over the past five years Hilarity Bites has brought some of the biggest and best comedians to Darlington, including Sarah Millican, Reginald D Hunter and John Bishop.

For more information on the Company and the event, visit: www.darlingtoncomedyfestival.co.uk.

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