Empowerment through comedy.

Let us introduce Dr Diddams and the project

Dr Natalie Diddams is a theatre director and research practitioner that specialises in empowerment through comedy. Over the past six years, Natalie has developed a new approach to writing and performing stand-up comedy, which has creativity and collaboration at its heart. In that time, Theatre in the Mill has collaborated with Dr Diddams on numerous projects; both virtual and live, in Bradford as well as internationally, with the ultimate aim being to provide a safe space where participants can experiment with stand-up and feel empowered by it.

The project began under the name “Women’s Comedy Workshop”. In a nutshell, the Women’s Comedy Workshop invites women to experiment with comedy, humour and laughter in a safe and supportive environment, culminating in a comedy night at which participants can experience performing at Theatre in the Mill in front of a live audience. 


Say hello to the project facilitators

The team is located across the North of England and Karachi, Pakistan.

Natalie Diddams

Natalie is a theatre director and has a PhD from Manchester Metropolitan University, where she researched women’s empowerment through comedy.

Carolyn Eden

Carolyn loves making people laugh and performs in stand-up, improv, sketch, drag and award winning lip-sync.

Emily Bampton

Emily is an experienced and passionate facilitator as well as a bright new voice in stand up comedy. She is also an improviser and performs regularly with the Oxford Imps

Isma Almas

Isma has performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, London’s Barbican Centre for Stonewall and Bradford’s Literature Festival. A much-needed voice in comedy, audiences love Isma’s friendly, Bradford-infused, preconception-shattering style.

Natalia Gul Jilani

With a dental degree Natalia is everything but a dentist, she followed her passion and pursued a career in acting. Currently part of a famous Tv show “Time out with Ahsan Khan” as well as performing stand up comedy at The Jungle, an enterprise she runs to revive the culture of arts & entertainment in Pakistan.

Lucy Marfell

Lucy is an Account Director by day, with a love of empowering women through the magic of collaborative comedy. She is rarely seen far from her sausage dog, Milo.

Sophie Collins

Sophie is an experienced education facilitator, with an interest in comedy and power.

Past & Present Projects

If you want to find out more, drop Natalie a line:

Dr Diddams’ Comedy Lab 

November 2021

Get to know your funny bone.

Led by Dr Natalie Diddams, the comedy lab was a four-week course specially designed for staff and students from the University of Bradford.  With no prior comedy experience in stand-up, the group experimented with exercises to help  understand comic persona and develop their own material for stand-up.  This safe space enabled participants to build a supportive network and experiment with stand-up comedy techniques. The course will culminate in a comedy night at Theatre in the Mill on Saturday 13th November, where the group will perform their new material to a friendly audience. 

Women’s Comedy Workshop Online

February 2021

This iteration of the Women’s Comedy Workshop was facilitated online (through the power of Zoom) over the course of a month and culminated in an online comedy showcase. 

Radicle Comedy Karachi

February 2021

In February 2021, Natalie partnered with Natalia Gul Jilani – a Karachi-based comedian – to deliver a series of online comedy workshops to women in Pakistan. The workshops are being hosted by NAPA: Pakistan’s National Academy of Performing Arts. A documentary film about the project was shown at Women of the World Pakistan on Monday 8 March and a live online performance event was held on Friday 12 March, which formed part of NAPA’s Laughter Festival.