Wil Anderson. 

Stan has commissioned Guesswork Television to produce the Australian Lockdown Comedy Festival, a series which will see local comedians perform material from their planned 2020 shows – from their homes.

Signed on are Wil Anderson, Cal Wilson, Nazeem Hussain, Dave Hughes, Zoe Coombs Marr, Tommy Little, Geraldine Hickey, Dilruk Jayasinha, Steph Tisdell, Aaron Chen, Sam Campbell, Michelle Brasier and Nath Valvo, with more to be announced soon.

The series has been announced as a direct result of the cancellation of many of Australia’s comedy festivals and tours as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, including the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and Sydney Comedy Festival.

Filming will take into consideration all current health measures – including comedians setting up and operating their own cameras, with a director on hand via video conferencing.

Stan’s chief content officer Nick Forward said: “The brand-new Stan Original Australian Lockdown Comedy Festival will bring together some of our brightest talent, both in front and behind the camera, joining our already established One Night Stan Comedy Specials to bring some much-needed laughter to the nation.”

Guesswork TV’s Kevin Whyte said: “For those in the comedy community a year without the Melbourne Comedy Festival is unimaginable – the festival bubble is our native habitat. This partnership with Stan gives the comedians a chance to share a bit of what they were cooking and get some support to cover the huge hole in their calendar.”

Wil Anderson said: “Thanks to Stan for their support of Australian comedy during this time – at least when I tell a joke at this gig and no one laughs I will know it is because I am responsibly socially isolating.”

Melbourne International Comedy Festival festival director Susan Provan said: “Hundreds of comedians worked hard to create brand new shows for their hundreds of thousands of fans to enjoy during the comedy festival season , but artists and audiences never got the chance to laugh in the same room! The Australian Lockdown Comedy Festival goes a long way to fill the gap with an eclectic mix of fantastic current comedy streamed straight to lounge rooms right across Australia.”