New Forest Comedy Festival – Stand-up Comedy Courses

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Comedy Courses at New Forest Comedy FestivalAs part of the New Forest Comedy Festival, Gemma Leader from Above Your Nerve is hosting two stand-up comedy courses – one for beginners and one for those that are already emerging acts.

The five-week Beginners Course will be held at The Dusty Barrel in Hythe on Tuesdays from April 25th to May 23rd, while the Emerging Acts Course will take place at The Attic At River Studios in Totton each Wednesday from April 26th to May 24th.

All participants of either course will have a chance to perform a short excerpt from their work at a final showcase event. Full details and booking information can be found on the New Forest Comedy Festival website, online.

Gemma Leader has had a long and successful career in the performing arts, beginning with working for an advertising agency for nearly ten years.

After this, she decided to pursue stand-up comedy as a more reliable and rewarding occupation. Now, her skills have led to the birth of Above Your Nerve, a platform where 18+-year-old participants can take classes tailored towards gaining an insider’s knowledge of stand-up comedy.

Gemma and her team will teach students about material generation, set structure, finding one’s comedic voice and more. Through these courses, students will also be able to interact with experienced professionals who will offer feedback and guidance along the way.

Since 2012, Gemma has been helping up-and-coming comics hone their skills at Soho Theatre by providing a safe and encouraging atmosphere for stand-up comedy.

This strategy led to her working with respected burgeoning talents such as Jack Rooke (‘Good Grief’) and Bimini Bon-Boulash (‘RuPaul’s Drag Race UK’). Her years of teaching deepened her own affinity for stand-up comedy.

Consequently, this prompted Gemma to create Above Your Nerve in order to foster new talent as well as bring much-needed diversity to the comedic world by amplifying unheard voices from underrepresented demographics.

Gemma, as a director, collaborates with different artists in order to help them express their full potential and bring their work to life. Her mission is to aid them in developing their ideas, polishing up their material and perfecting their performances. She worked alongside Charlotte Fox during the production of ‘Mercury Retrograde’, while more recently joining Shotgun Carousel’s creative team for ‘The Grotteaux’.

The beginners and emerging acts courses will take place over five weeks, respectively occurring on Tuesdays at The Dusty Barrel in Hythe and Wednesdays at The Attic At River Studios in Totton.

Both will culminate with an end-of-course showcase event where participants can demonstrate their progress by performing excerpts from the pieces they have created. For further details and booking information please see the website.

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