The comedy industry is a tough place to work, we all surely know that by now. It becomes quite obvious if we take time to consider the unpredictability of live performance, on stage and off stage. Not only does it cost comics money to perform at certain venues, but the many hours of travelling to and from them also burns a hole in the pocket.
So why, up until now, has there been no official support system for professional comics? This is where the newly founded UK Comedy Guild, with its 400+ members, steps in to act as a safety net for working comedians across the UK and provide personal, financial and even legal support, as well as campaigning more generally for sufficient pay and working conditions.
One of its founders, comedian Sara Pascoe, summed the work of the guild up better than we could: “Being a comic is a wonderful job, but it also leaves people vulnerable and solitary. For too long there’s been no recourse for individuals who have been mistreated.”
The Guild currently has one central council made up of 29 volunteer members who work within the industry, whether that be performing or promoting and consists of: Matthew Baylis, Bobby Carroll, Ben Norris, Jarred Christmas, Matt Green, Dan Edge, Susan Murray, JoJo Sutherland, Silky, Javier Jarquin, Ross McGrane, Cerys Nelmes, Sheraz Yousaf, Brian Higgins, Trish Caller, Kahn Johnson, Paddy Lennox, PierretteS’Cobaz, Doug Segal, Danny Worthington, Alexis Dubus, John Scott, Pam Ford, Dominic Frisby, John Ryan, Julian Deane, Paul Adams, Justin Moorhouse and James Sherwood.