This September in our Funny Women Diaries, Amy Schumer is in town to preview the new series of her show Inside Amy Schumer, just a few days after the comedian shredded a sexist heckler at her Stockholm show. Kate and her team are busy reading scripts and watching comedy shorts to pick out shortlist for Funny Women Awards as their new He-Manesque legs recover from rigors of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Our leg muscles are in recovery having returned from the mountainous terrain that is the Edinburgh Fringe festival. It is not just the hilly streets, nor climbing Arthur’s Seat that does your calf muscles in, but climbing the stairs of the Cowgate. Now, between admiring our now He-Manesque legs and sorting through a large pile of washing from the Fringe we are reading scripts and watching comedy shorts to pick out shortlist for the Funny Women Comedy Writing and Shorts Award!
We’ve had more entrants than ever for the Comedy Writing award and the Comedy Shorts Award – which is in its third year. We have also paired up our Stage Award finalists with their mentors, who are some of the best women in comedy at the moment. Finalist Catherine Bohart has been paired with the acerbic Shazia Mirza, Rosie Jones is with the author of Animal Sara Pascoe, Rose Robinson will be with impressionist Jan Ravens, Harriet Braine with Snog Marry Avoid’s Ellie Taylor, Micky Overman is to work with feminist comic Tiff Stevenson and Rivka Uttley has been paired with 2004 Funny Women Award winner Zoe Lyons.
While this is to be our biggest Funny Women Awards final yet at KoKo London, last night I was lucky enough to be invited to London’s O2 Arena to review comedian Amy Schumer, with an audience number we have yet to hit! The comedy star was fantastic, giving us a sneak peek of the new series of her show Inside Amy Schumer and sharing some hilarious paparazzi photos of her and her sister. It seems so strange that a few nights before this powerful comedy figure was subject to that old classic heckle to women ‘show us your tits!’ Amy Schumer dealt with the heckle brilliantly, having the man ejected from the venue. I wonder how successful she would have to be to be exempt from sexism whilst trying to go about her work.
It is our hope at Funny Women that the finalists of our Awards will never have to deal with sexism in their comedy business, or indeed any business. It’s unlikely, but we and Tomboy Tarts are working towards it!