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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Jeez Louise

A celebration of women in comedy

The great Linda Haggar set up the Jeez Louise Funny Women’s Forum in 2002, with the hopes of encouraging more women to get into comedy and to support those already there. At that time, comedy was an incredibly male dominated industry and she wanted to change that. Jeez Louise is still going strong.

Keep an eye out for Jeez Louise 2021 events to be announced!



Trans, non-binary and gender-diverse comedians are standing up and stepping out. As the world evolves its understanding of gender identity, pronouns and social norms, the rising number of gender-transcendent stars are reaching wider audiences.

Transplaining brings together an incredible panel of performers – Anna Piper Scott, Krishna Istha, Chloe Black & Scout Boxall – to share their stories from the page to the stage.



‘Everything is copy’ Nora Ephron

But is it fair, and is it funny, to mine your personal life (and other people’s) for the sake of comedy?

Jeez Louise was born in 2002 to encourage more women to get into comedy, and to support those already there. 17 years on, we chat with women who have taken the time to look back – tackling their own memoir. From process, to dealing with the memories and emotions of the past, our expert panel delve into writing your own history.



In 2018, the Jeez Louise conversation addressed the #metoo movement from the perspective of women working in comedy today. 

In an industry that encourages rawness and vulnerability via humour and personal storytelling, what are the lines that shouldn’t be crossed, on and off stage? Have the last six months induced any change? 

The Festival’s best comedy minds came together a civilised discussion about being uncivil.


Jeez Louise Address: Cal Wilson
Presented in collaboration with Nelly Thomas

Women in comedy. The questions are always asked. Based on anonymous answers from industry and audiences, Cal discussed whether gender makes a difference... from the perspective of those watching, programming and performing comedy.

This address explored honest responses around diversity in the world of comedy. What does the industry actually think? Is it what we think they're thinking?