Melbourne International Comedy Festival acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands upon which we work and live. We acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' spirit, imagination and rich history of storytelling and humour that is an inspiration to all Australians.

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Meet our Deadly Funny National Grand Final winner!

MELBOURNE, 16 APRIL 2022: Melbourne International Comedy Festival’s Deadly Funny National Grand Final took place today in Melbourne. Hosted by Kevin Kropinyeri, the lineup of 12 finalists, was a cheeky, loud, black and proud celebration of fresh and funny new First Nations talent from around the country.

For 16 years the Deadly Funny competition – Australia’s only dedicated Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander comedy competition – has crossed the continent to unearth the freshest and fiercest, comedians and yarn-spinners from the oldest culture on earth. Today they took to the Forum Melbourne stage to compete for the National Deadly Funny title and a $2,000 cash prize.

The 2022 Deadly Funny title was awarded to Janty Blair from Butchulla QLD, with special mentions given to David Human and Dora Smith.

The judges, a panel of industry experts, said ‘Today’s Deadly Funny Final performance was a great representation of the next generation of First Nations comedy from all over Australia. It was a really eclectic mix of all ages, all perspectives’.

The 11 Deadly Funny national finalists who performed today included Bel Mac (Kukatha/Wikangu, Kaurana, SA), Ben Moodie (Gamilaroi, VIC), Cameron Ribbons (Kamilaroi, ACT), Dave Human (Wiradjuri, Living Dunghutti country, NSW), Dora Smith (Yawuru/Noongar, Broome & Perth, WA), Gavin Sempel (Dharawalm, VIC), Janty E Blair (Butchulla, QLD), Jessie Human (Wiradjuri Dharug and Dharkinjung, NSW), Kylan Abrum (Yidinji, QLD), Maureen French (Darug, NSW) and Nathan Wright (Larrakia/Wurrumungu, NT).

As the winner of Deadly Funny, Janty Blair joins the ranks of the country’s favourite Indigenous comedians including previous winners Kevin Kropinyeri, Steph Tisdell, Ghenoa Gela, Jalen Sutcliffe and Shiralee Hood, who have all gone on to stellar careers performing around the country.

Head to for more information about the Deadly Funny program.