The standard of the 2017 Funny Women Awards Regional Finals has been exceptional. In recognition of this, we are pleased to announce four wildcards – bringing the 2017 Funny Women Awards finalists up to 10. Having stormed our Brighton Regional Final we picked runner-up Maisie Adam as a Wildcard who will go through to the Funny Women Awards Final on 12th March.
Funny Women: How does it feel to be through to the Funny Women Awards final?
Maisie Adam: It feels bloody brilliant! The standard has been so high, and I’ve just loved seeing everyone’s stuff and to just be part of it. To have made the Final is the cherry on top, I’m super grateful and so excited for it – what a final it’s going to be!
FW: How did you get started in comedy?
MA: A friend of mine was putting on a fundraiser for International Women’s Day at the local social club and she wanted an all-female line up. She had booked these brilliant local musicians and singers but didn’t have anyone to MC the night. She asked me if I’d want to do it, and before I thought about it I heard myself just saying “yes”. I spent the next couple of weeks in the run-up to the event panicking on what I was going to say, so I wrote a couple of jokes I thought might work, and they did! From that, I thought stand-up comedy was the best thing in the world and I did as much of it as I could wherever I could.
FW: Who is your comedy inspiration?
MA: Obviously Victoria Wood is a huge inspiration for me, because I think she made the female perspective accessible to everyone. Especially at that time as well, the fact she had a theatre full of men and women laughing at her specific experiences and perspectives as a woman was honestly so revolutionary, and I think if it weren’t for her we wouldn’t have had other great comedians, and stand-up comedy itself wouldn’t have developed the way it did. I also think people like Carol Burnett and Lucille Ball paved the way for so many comics, particularly female comics. They stood out in such a male-dominated industry and their sense of fun made them incredibly likeable because they were so silly yet had this incredible wit.
Who are your favourite funny women?
I really like Luisa Omielan, and how she makes such personal – and often delicate – subjects relatable and accessible to her audiences. I remember watching her show What Would Beyoncé Do? and I had honestly never seen stand-up comedy like that before. I think it’s a true masterclass for anyone looking for “the perfect solo show”.
I also really like Kristen Wiig, who I think people often just pass off as an actress but she’s an incredibly talented writer and sketch performer too. Her Saturday Night Live pieces have me crying every time; she’s our Lucille Ball I think. And of course, Jennifer Saunders. Her work – both with Dawn French in her French & Saunders stuff and also her partnership with Joanna Lumley in Ab Fab – again, made female perspectives accessible to everyone; my Dad is always in stitches watching Ab Fab. Her writing is brilliant and the characters she creates are always laugh-out-loud funny.
Catch Maisie Adam at the 2017 Funny Women Awards Charity Final on 12th March with our host Jan Ravens! For tickets and more information click here!