Comedian Producer, Peggy Boyce began the Funniest Females Contests in the early 90s. Using her knowledge of the business, and her public relations experience Boyce quickly grew her local contest into a National Ladies of Laughter competition. The contest became and is still renown for showcasing the female comedy stars of the future. All of its winners -and many of its participants - have gone on to successful comedy careers.
After establishing itself as a prestigious national event and many funny females being awarded cash and other prizes at fabulous gala events, including at Madison Square Garden, Ladies of Laughter's major sponsor partner bowed out due to the economy and the events came to an end.
In its wake, there have been several other events celebrating female comedy, however the gap Ladies of Laughter left in the promotion of female comedy was felt by funny ladies throughout the industry.
The Women in Comedy Festival had come to be, once put on by the producers of The Toyota Comedy Festival, it too ended abruptly. Several years ago a Women in Comedy Festival in Boston began and has quickly become a popular and ever-growing showcase of top and up-and-coming female talent every March. Comic Bible's Deb Farrar-Parkman was on the scene and details of this past March's event are in the next issue of The Comic Bible Magazine.
Bill Word Productions and Flappers Comedy Club hold a long-running local contest for California's Funniest Females. Funny lady, Jackie Fabulous usually hosts the finals after months of competition rounds. In Oregon, Leigh Anne Jasheway created and for five years produces the a popular, Women in Comedy Annual. In San Francisco, Kung-Po Productions has a less consistent Female Comedy Showcase event.
This year, Hope Flood held the first-ever Females in Comedy Convention in California and deserves Kudos for her efforts to bring female comedians together, and for a successful first-time event. While the Females in Comedy Convention events did showcase some comedy, its main focus was on workshops and the business of comedy.
And what about the business? Without showcase opportunities for female comedians, it's hard for female comedians to be seen. Many club bookers are still under the impression females aren't funny and will not give more than one slot a night to a woman comedian. The new abundance of female starring sitcoms may change that, but for now, the fact remains, female comedians don't have many opportunities for stage-time, or to showcase themselves.
... Until this week - when LADIES OF LAUGHTER announced the competition is back, taking entries and will again offer fabulous prizes including cash and publicity.
Comic Bible is proud to have signed on as a sponsor and encourages other business to do the same, while also shouting to female comedians: Enter Ladies of Laughter! Be Funny! Be Heard!