A Barnes-storming victory

Angela wins BBC new comedy title

Angela Barnes has been crowned winner of this year’s BBC Radio 2 New Comedy Award.

The 34-year-old from Maidstone triumphed after a public vote following a final in London, broadcast live.

She said: ‘This is a massive privilege and the fact it was a public vote makes it all the more special.  It’s been an amazing journey with brilliant people and I hope this will open some doors and I look forward to gigging with my fellow finalists on the comedy circuit.’

Host Patrick Kielty said: ‘Angela tonight came out and impressed again.  It’s one thing to win a heat but to come out here with fresh material and the confidence that she had tonight set her apart, and the great British public agreed. But I have to say all of our six finalists will have a big future in comedy.’

The other finalists were Pat Cahill, Chris Turner, Tez Ilyas, Mark Restuccia and Joe Lycett – who has just landed a regular slot on BBC One’s prime-time show Alexander Armstrong’s Epic Win.

Barnes, who has been performing comedy for 18 months, actually came second in her heat in Brighton, where she now lives, but was voted through to the semi-finals and to ultimate victory by the public.

Her prize includes a slot in Radio 2’s Comedy Zone, and to be featured on the by Steve Wright show on Wednesday, plus development advice and guidance from BBC radio comedy. Before the final, she said her biggest comedy ambition wass to appear on Radio 4's The News Quiz.

The competition was open to any act over 18 who has been performing on the comedy circuit as a stand-up for less than three years. More than 600 people applied.

The BBC New Comedy Award were revived this year after a six-year absence. Winners of the initial incarnation, which began in 1995, included Alan Carr, Rhod Gilbert , Josie Long and Marcus Brigstocke.

Published: 19 Jun 2011

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