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Winners of the Wellington Raw Comedy Quest 2014

On the 1st May 2014 Back

Two new Wellington comedians have just won the right to call themselves the funniest guys in town by winning the Wellington Raw Comedy Quest 2014. Daniel James Smith and James Malcolm placed first and second respectively in the competition last week at San Fran on Cuba St. They are are now following the footsteps of previous winners and such household names as Cori Gonzalez-Macuer, Sarah Harpur and Guy Williams.

Daniel and James now go on to represent Wellington at the national final in Auckland as part of the 2014 NZ International Comedy Festival on Sunday 11 May. Traditionally Wellington comedians have placed very well, and often take home the title of best new comedian in New Zealand. This year there is $2000 in prize money up for grabs, and a season at the Classic Comedy Bar Auckland.

Both winners are relatively new to stand up comedy, and reflect the growing strength of the Wellington comedy scene. With more rooms open over different nights, there are now many different pathways for comedians to learn the craft.

Daniel started just over a year ago and was attracted to comedy through his love of playing with words. “Making jokes gives me the chance to show language in a fun new way for people to hear”.

James came through the Class Comedians’ programme as part of the 2013 International Comedy Festival, and made his stage debut less than 12 months ago. Being guided by professional comedians in the beginning has helped his natural talent progress.

The comedians battled it out over 4 heats, 2 semifinals and last week’s final - with only 6 minutes to impress the judges at each stage. “The standard this year has been higher than previous; both winners had to really bring their game to stand out and we are confident they will make an impression in Auckland” said judge Greg Ellis.

James and Daniel will next perform in Generation Why this week as part of the 2014 International Comedy Festival in cahoots with Old Mout Cider which is a show case of up and coming talent in the capital.