Tom Gidman

Tom Gidman

Winner of the Chortle Student Comedy Awards 2016
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Tom makes a great impression

Mimic crowned Chortle Student Comedy king

Tom Gidman last night became the first character comedian to win the Chortle Student Comedy Award.

The 23-year-old impressed judges at the Edinburgh Fringe with his set, in which he impersonated Andy Murray, Ed Miliband and David Attenborough, as well as performing a spoof comedy-magic act.

Gidman  – a fourth-year Italian and Spanish student at Bristol University – wins £1,000 as well as the industry kudos. 

He said: 'The Chortle student awards have been a brilliant experience throughout and regardless of the result it has been so much fun to be able to do gigs in new places and perform to different kinds of audiences. 'It has especially been great to meet and get to know all the other comedians competing, who were all really fantastic and have been a joy to perform with. 'Actually winning the thing is obviously a huge honour, slightly surreal if I'm honest, but I hope it will be able to open doors in some way or another, and I'm really looking forward to working out what the next step is, besides from training for Wimbledon of course.'

Runner-up was Rahul Kohli, who already has his own solo show at the Fringe, Newcastle Brown Male. He is studying an MA in political science, democracy and elections at Manchester University.

Chortle editor Steve Bennett said: ‘It was a particularly strong final this year, and I think all these young acts have a great comedy future ahead of them. What specially stood out was the wide range of styles, as all the finalists had found their comic voice, each distinct from the next. The atmosphere in Pleasance One was electric, and the comics all bought their A-game to match.’

This year’s Chortle Student Comedy Awards are supported by NextUp, a new way to watch stand-up comedy online. Sign up for an early invite at nextupcomedy.com/chortle.

The other acts to compete at in the final, and hosted by Mark Watson, were Adam Mastroianni, Roya Shadmand, Michael Odewale, Eric Rushton, Josh Jones and Morgan Rees.

Judges were Chortle’s Steve Bennett; Julia McKenzie, Executive Editor, BBC Radio Comedy; agents and promoters  Corry Shaw from Gag Reflex, Chris Quaile from Get Comedy and Catherine Gagon from Avalon; and David Hardcastle from London’s Leicester Square Theatre and Museum of Comedy.

Previous finalists in the competition’s 13-year history have included Simon Bird, Tom Rosenthal, Chris Ramsay, Joe Lycett and Iain Stirling.

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Published: 17 Aug 2016

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