Comedy's new honours student
Kwame Asante is Chortle's student champ
Kwame Asante has been crowned this year’s Chortle Student Comedy Award champion.
The 21-year-old UCL medicine undergraduate took home the £2,500 first prize – plus the valuable kudos the title gives to young comics at a sold-out showcase at the Edinburgh Fringe.
Asante, from Beckenham in Kent, has been performing for two years and says his routine ‘draws humour from my background and student life, as well as the topical, observations and true stories’.
It is not his first talent hunt final, having been runner-up in last year’s Loaded Laftas Search for a Star contest and a finalist in the Leicester Square New Comedian of the Year 2010.
But the Chortle Student Comedy Award, powered by The Sims 3, is the first time he has been crowned champion. He joins a roster of previous winners that includes Lloyd Langford, Tom Deacon and Joe Lycett.
Johnny Pelham, a 20-year-old Newcastle University politics and sociology student, was voted runner-up by the panel of agents, producers and reviewers at the final, which was hosted by Mark Watson.
Originally from Bradford, his self-deprecating set revolved around a facial operation he was offered by the NHS and being the only white kid at a predominantly Asian school. His prize was £500.
Chortle editor Steve Bennett said: ‘The quality of acts in the final just gets better and better each year, and every member of the class of 2012 did a fantastic set. We had a diverse range of styles on the night, but all the acts had a distinctive voice and confidence in their approach that augers well for the future.
‘Kwame tipped the balance with his poised, relaxed take on his own foibles and some strange things people had said to him. He’s a charismatic, charming comedian who looks certain to go on to great things. As indeed do all the finalists.’
Jacqui Ashworth, product manager of sponsors The Sims 3 said: 'We have been amazed by the fantastic talent seen in the competition and The Sims 3 is incredibly proud to be able support such a great initiative. Kwame is a worthy winner and we wish him all the best in his comedy career.’
The other finalists were
Adam Mitchell: An Edinburgh university history student from Chester
Dalia Malek: A PhD law student at King's College London who had never performed a stand-up gig before entering the Chortle award.
David Elms: Who studies linguistics and was last year named Edinburgh University Stand-up of the year.
Hari Sriskantha: A physics student, and the third from Edinburgh University to make it to the final.
Johnny F Monotone: The creation of York student Sebastian Bloomfield
Pierre Novellie: Born in South Africa, this 21-year-old is studying Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic at Cambridge.
Posted: 14 Aug 2012