If laughter is the best medicine, then Leeds is about to open up its own pharmacy of fun!
The second annual Leeds Comedy Festival will run from this Saturday June 4 to 11, and a host of stars will be plying their witty wares at three venues in the city.
The Wardrobe, Milo and the Hi-Fi Club will serve as the backdrops as stand-up stars from across the country bid to tickle our funny bones and get Leeds laughing.
There will be 29 shows in total over the eight days of the festival, with around 55 comedians taking to the stage.
The packed bill includes familiar faces and voices from TV and radio - among them Phill Jupitus, Richard Herring, Stephen K Amos, Hardeep Singh Kohli and Milton Jones - and a laugh-spectrum ranging from quirky and surreal to deadpan and razor-sharp satire.
Milton Jones said ahead of his sold-out gig at The Wardrobe on Monday: “I plan to give everyone in Leeds a huge boost. Then they can all lick the chocolate off it!”
Festival organiser Toby Jones has 20 years of experience as a comedy promoter. He first had the idea for a Leeds comedy festival two years ago and, after last year’s inaugural - much smaller - event was well received, he decided to go even bigger and better this year.
Mr Jones said: “After the huge success of last year’s inaugural festival, we have expanded to include 29 shows featuring over 50 performers across three different venues in the heart of the city centre.
“Based on the great reputation of last year’s festival amongst the comedy industry, we have been able to attract the likes of Milton Jones, Richard Herring, Stephen K Amos and Phill Jupitus along with the return of acts such as Nick Helm, Robin Ince and Justin Moorhouse.
“It’s a big step up from last year and we are well on course with our long term aim of becoming the largest comedy festival in the North of England.
“We hope that this year’s programme has something for everyone as we have included magicians, live podcasts and chat shows, comedy competitions and family shows together with some of the most exciting stand-up comedians in the country.”
Leeds comedy Festival 2016 will launch on Saturday with Javier Jarquin: Card Ninja at The Wardrobe, showing off his extraordinary sleight of hand card tricks.
Also performing at the same venue on Saturday is Nick Helm, who arrives in Leeds fresh from multi-award winning success with his hit BBC sitcom Uncle and musical sketch show Heavy Entertainment.
Sunday’s menu features surreal comic Paul Foot and a preview of his ‘Tis A Pity She’s A Piglet show.
For the full line-up, see www.leedscomedyfestival.co.uk