Ticketmaster unveils State of Play: Comedy UK report

Ticketmaster has unveiled the findings of its latest report into the live entertainment industry, State of Play: Comedy UK.

The report found that female comedians are enjoying an unprecedented surge in popularity, with ticket sales having trebled since 2011, and that Lee Evans is the UK’s favourite comedian.

Miranda Hart and Sarah Millican are the leading females in the comedy world, topping the list of highest selling female comedians since 2009.

Overall, shows by female comedians now account for 14% of all comedy events sold, as opposed to just 2% in 2009.

The news was welcomed by comedian Shappi Khorsandi, who said: “It’s great to see the surge in female comedians, stamping out the prejudice. We have still further to go though. I’d like to see more female comics enjoying the dominance that men do on the bigger stages.

“Perhaps we are not capturing the public’s imagination in the same way, but it is all changing for the better and we are well on the way to enjoying equal success with our comedy brothers.”

Comedy critic Bruce Dessau added: “I knew that there were more female comedians performing but this dramatic increase clearly demonstrates that there is a huge demand for funny women.

“Fortunately there is a rapidly growing number of gifted female comedians out there to meet the demand.”

The report also exposes where, how and with whom we enjoy comedy and what tickles our funny bones.

Over half of comedy attendees wouldn’t pay to see someone live they hadn’t already seen on TV, while two thirds would rather go to a big comedy tour with a famous comedian than a smaller event with mostly unknowns.

However, the report also found a 46% increase in comedy events outside of London.

These findings form just part of Ticketmaster’s State of Play: Comedy UK report, the most comprehensive study ever done into the UK comedy industry.

The report was produced by Ticketmaster’s LiveAnalytics division, who surveyed 2,499 members of the British public, including 1,259 comedy attendees, and combined findings with ticket sales to produce a wide-ranging set of insights.

Ticketmaster’s Vice President of Insight, Sophie Crosby, said: “The report shows that the shared experience of attending comedy events is something that truly unites us, not just as families and couples but as friends – even though we may have differences in humour!

“The industry is in rude health and it’s fantastic to see that the public are engaging in a range of options for seeing live comedy – from arena tours with the country’s biggest comedians to shows in smaller regional venues.”

The State of Play: Comedy UK report is available to download here.