I felt incredibly empowered after performing… It’s difficult to describe how much performing in that space meant to me. I was so scared beforehand, I’ve never done anything like that before… [But] after the first laugh I managed to relax… and enjoy it because it felt like they were laughing with me, not at me and they genuinely seemed to enjoy it
(participant, 2019)

THE STORY

Women’s Comedy Workshop is a participatory project that invites women to experiment with comedy, humour and laughter in a safe and supportive environment.
It was founded on an understanding that women are less likely to participate in, enjoy making, and gain acclaim through comedy. We work to challenge and change this. It was set up by Natalie Diddams in 2016. Natalie is a Manchester-based theatre director and academic researcher, who recently completed a PhD on the importance of humour within fourth wave feminism. The thesis can be accessed here.

Over the past 5 years, Natalie has developed a radically new approach to writing and performing stand-up comedy. By giving each participant the space to grow and develop in their own way, this approach has diversity, creativity and solidarity at its heart.

THE LATEST

The next  series of Women’s Comedy Workshops is happening right now! Natalie – working alongside other great women – are taking a group of women through a basic introduction to stand-up comedy, experimenting with writing and performance. The four-week project culminates in this online showcase where WCW participants perform their new content to a friendly and enthusiastic virtual crowd (that’s us!). The virtual comedy night will on Saturday 31st July

 

Our Core Team

The team is situated across two locations;
Bradford, UK and Karachi, Pakistan.

If you have any questions about the project, or if you would like to be added to the mailing list, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Natalie on radiclecomedy@gmail.com.

Recent projects…

In 2020, 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.