Archives for July 2012

Entries for 2012 have now closed

Frankie Ward | 17:38 UK time, Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Over the last five weeks we’ve been encouraging budding British stand-ups to head over to our application form and have a go at our humble competition.

Despite the constant Tweets and Facebook updates, over 800 of you decided that, rather than take out a social media restraining order against us, you’d actually give this thing a go and send us recordings of you at your funniest. For that we simply can’t thank you enough.

So what happens next? Well over the next three weeks we’ll pretty much be bathing in your entries, (like rich people in the movies do with money whilst laughing manically). Oh, and between these unhinged episodes, we’ll also be doing a spot of listening too!

At the beginning of August, 80 entrants will be asked to attend one of eight regional heats. You can find out a bit more about where these are here. Very soon, we’ll be telling you how you, friends, family and distant acquaintances can get hold of tickets to all of these shows, but for now why not find out more about how you can be at the very first heat in Edinburgh?

Are you one of the nervous comedians holding a vigil by your phone? Producer Lianne has a message for you…


“Submissions have closed and we’ve received over 800 entries, which is an unbelievable response! It goes without saying that we really appreciate the time and effort you all took to apply, and we’re looking forward to locking ourselves away from the world for the next 4 weeks and listening to you all.

“If we received your completed entry – application form and audio – you would have had an email notification from the team to say so. Any questions, you can email us at, send us a tweet or message us on Facebook and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

“Just to put into context the task ahead of us: 800 entries at 5 minutes each works out at 4,000 minutes, or 67 (ish) hours, which means that if we were to tie ourselves to a desk in isolation and listen solidly – without any breaks for eating, toilet, life in general (but perhaps for sleeping) - we might get through the initial listening period in around 8 days. Unfortunately we will need to have a bit of time for normal activities, including things like breathing. (And we’ll probably need to give our ears a break every now and then.) So we reckon we have about 17 days of listening ahead of us. And that will still be pretty much full on every day. So do bear with us! And if you see us in the street give us a little cheer maybe. Or a hug. (Just don’t tell us a joke as I expect we will be joked up to the max).      

“I’ll be judging the entries with a team of Producers from the BBC Radio Comedy department. Each entry will have at least two listens and on undecided decisions, a third. We’ll be judging them using our judging criteria (originality of material; quality of writing (structure); likeability (audience engagement); performance and delivery).

“As our Online Producer Frankie says, we’ll be whittling the entries down to our top 80, and these entrants will be invited to go through to one of eight national heats – we’ll let you know from the week beginning 30th July. The heats take place from 11th August through to 2nd October. If you're successful you'll be invited to a heat closest to you wherever possible (though this may not be possible in all cases). 

“Unfortunately if you don't hear from us in that week, it means that you won’t have made it through to the heats this year, but thank you for entering and we wish you every luck in the future! And do keep in touch with us – we’d love to meet you at one of the heats and hear from you via on Facebook, Twitter and the blog, where we’ll be posting lots of content as we work our way around the UK in the next few months, before crowning our BBC New Comedy Award Winner 2012 in November.

“Right. These entries are not going to listen to themselves…”

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