2022 Melbourne International Comedy Festival Awards

The Melbourne International Comedy Festival Awards were given out today live on the Festival’s (rather choppy) Facebook feed. Opened by Steph Tisdale and hosted by Joel Creasey.

Congratulations to ALL the nominees and winners!

Most Outstanding Show 

WINNER: Rhys Nicholson – Rhys! Rhys! Rhys!

Aaron Chen If Weren’t Filmed Nobody Would Believe
Cameron James Electric Dreams
Danielle Walker Nostalgia
Geraldine Quinn Broad
Greg Larsen We All Have Bloody Thoughts
Laura Davis If This Is It
Rhys Nicholson Rhys! Rhys! Rhys!

Best Newcomer

– for a solo performer or group of performers doing their first Festival show

WINNER: Frankie McNair – Relax Your Knees

Will McKenna Appellation
Frankie McNair Relax Your Knees
Bronwyn Kuss Any Goss?
Steph Broadbridge Hot Chick/Tired Mum
Sunanda Loves Britney
Mish Wittrup Soy Fat White

The Golden Gibbo

– in memory of the late, great Lynda Gibson – is aimed at finding a local, independent show that pursues the artists’ idea more than it pursues commercial gain.

WINNER: Alex Hines To Schapelle And Back

Mel & Sam Shit-Wrecked!
Maria Angelico The Disappearing Act
Geraldine Quinn Broad
Ashley Apap Ouch!
Aiden Willcox Lightly Familiar
Ross Purdy Hey Hey It’s Doomsday
Alex Hines To Schapelle And Back

Directors’ Choice Award 

– awarded by the Festival Director in consultation with festival programming colleagues to a show they think deserves to be celebrated;

WINNER: Wil Anderson – Wilogical and Bronwyn Kuss – Any Goss?

The People’s Choice Award

-for the most popular show of the Festival as determined by the ticket buying public;

WINNER: Urzila Carlson – It’s Personal!

The Pinder Prize

– honouring Festival co-founder John Pinder, and supporting a performer to travel to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

WINNER: Danielle Walker Nostalgia

The Piece of Wood

– comics’ choice award, selected by past winners and presented to a peer literally for “doin’ good stuff ‘n’ that”

WINNER: Tina Del Twist!

Steph Broadbridge – Hot Chick/Tired Mum

Reviewed by Bren Carruthers

A 2019 Raw Comedy finalist, Steph Broadbridge has been tearing up the Sydney scene and clocking up considerable time on stage, impressive given that These Unprecedented Times have probably been the worst for launching a career in comedy. Winning respect and plaudits from the likes of Justin Hamilton, Michael Hing and Cameron James along the way, it’s clear to see why in Hot Chick/Tired Mum, her solo Melbourne International Comedy Festival debut.

As the title suggests, Steph plays with the modern notion of the maiden and the mother, or rather, getting caught in the space between. Wrestling with misogyny, the health system and the greater nuances of a disheartening thirtysomething existence, her warm, casual, down-to-earth demeanour belies a darkness and melancholy behind the veneer. Delving into such difficult topics is a formidable task, even for seasoned comedians, but to her great credit Steph navigates it with ease.

Originally a musician before making the transition to comedy, Steph also wields a ukulele for a few songs. While they’re amusing enough, including a musical interpretation of some online reviews for a psych, they operate more as refreshing interludes rather than move a narrative forward. Perhaps as a result of performing those shorter sets, she has yet to have the opportunity to fully marry her two talents for best (and no doubt explosive) effect.

Quibbles aside, there’s no doubting her natural talent, and with more experience with the longer format of Festival shows, every possibility she’ll deliver a breakout performance in future years. Pencil Hot Chick/Tired Mum into your schedule for those ‘I saw Steph Broadbridge back when…’ bragging rights.

Steph Broadbridge performs Hot Chick/Tired Mum at The Butterfly Club til Apr 24