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About Helen Duff
Award-winning, critically acclaimed, socially conscious clown, Helen Duff started performing comedy in 2014 when her first solo show, Vanity Bites Back, won a Fringe First nomination at the Edinburgh Festival. It was subsequently (and rather impressively) then selected for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival and Perth Fringe World. A clown cookery show about anorexia, it won a Pick of the Festival Award at VAULTS Festival London before completing a 5 star rated tour of regional theatres across the UK.
If that wasn’t enough of a cracking start to her comedy career, that same year Helen Duff also made the semi-finals in the So You Think You’re Funny Awards.
Named as a finalist in 2015’s Brighton Comedy Festival and Squawker Awards, and in the 2017 Amused Moose New Act Awards, Helen Duff’s shamelessly silly, yet whip-smart brand of clowning comedy has continued making waves at home and on the international circuit.Debuting her first comedy hour, Come With Me at the 2016 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Helen Duff sold out her 26 night run at the Pleasance Courtyard and has continued receiving rave reviews and invitations to tour internationally, including Berlin, Perth Fringe World and VAULT Festival, London. In 2017 Helen returned to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival with When The Going Gets Duff, fearlessly unpicking the role of a woman in a post-truth world. 2018 has seen her in her eagerly awaited follow up, How Deep is Your Duff, whilst 2019 promises even more hilarity with Helen Duff: Is The Tits – and she doesn’t care who knows it..
WATCH HELEN DUFF: HOW DEEP IS YOUR DUFF
An intimate yet bold story-telling comedy special from the multi-talented Helen Duff. Join the “socially conscious clown” in her celebration of femininity, falling in love and making connections. There’s sexual frustration, song, dance and mime in this free form, kooky stand-up menagerie. Dive Deep.
Reviews and Awards
Helen Duff was Fringe First nominee at the Edinburgh Fringe 2014. She was a semi finalist in the 2014 So You Think You’re Funny awards and a finalist at Brighton Comedy Festival and Squawker Awards 2015. In 2017, she was a finalist in the Amused Moose New Act Awards.
‘Fresh, quick witted and supremely empowered…a formidable comic’Scotsman
‘A master of shamelessly silly yet socially conscious clowning’Broadway Baby
‘Absolutely shameless, boldly ridiculous, embarrassingly funny’Australia Times
‘Duff dives to ‘a level of intimacy most acts wouldn’t dare…’Duff is incredibly funny and deserves any and all praise that comes her way’The Skinny
‘Her energy is endless and boundless, and it’s a joy to behold. She is the very definition of vibrancy’EdFest Mag
Helen Duff Tickets
Information on comedian Helen Duff’s upcoming gigs and live shows can be found here
It’ll be no surprise to learn that Helen Duff began her exploration into comedy by studying clowning in France under the infamous and formidable teacher Phillipe Gaulier. She told About Time magazine: “I survived being called as boring as a fart on a plastic bag daily (!) and still wanted to get on stage and play. That gave me the confidence to celebrate what was unique to me as a means of connecting to audiences on a very human level.”
And Helen Duff’s audiences play a big part in the unique spontaneity she brings to her live shows. Speaking to Voice Mag she explains that it was the audience/performer relationship that first encouraged her to pursue her ambitions: “I love how much you can get away with in front of a live audience, where you’re all in it together and there’s far less time for thought. Last night at a gig I did an entire homage to Pretty Woman out of the blue and then became a female Jabba the Hutt because it seemed an appropriate way to top things off.”
In addition to her blossoming stand-up career, Helen began life as an actor and voice-over artist, graduating with a BA Hons in Acting from the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. Continuing her acting career alongside her comedy, she recently wrapped filming on her first feature film, Holmes and Watson, with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly. She is also making a podcast, writing a screenplay for a 6 part comedy drama series, running clown workshops for kids, and was part of the Care Home Tour, an initiative taking comedy into Care Homes across the UK pioneered by Liam Lonergan and Ben Target.
When Helen Duff is not appearing in her own live solo shows, she can be seen performing Improv with The Right Kind of Trouble, at The Rosemary Branch Theatre in London. She also runs Makers of Meaning, a film night celebrating funny, insightful, surprising cinema directed by women as part of Objectively Funny’s electric programme. So with an impressively varied comedy career to date, what has been her most treasured memory so far? She told Moody Comedy “I feel very lucky to get to do comedy, it’s helped me feel much happier in myself and I’ve met some really inspiring sorts – like the Weirdo’s comedy collective held together by the endlessly inventive Adam Larter, who has a show at Heroes of The Fringe, and Ben Target, also at Heroes, who makes my mind smile (as well as my face).”
Get More Helen Duff
Want more of Helen Duff? You’re in luck – her full stand-up comedy special is available to watch on NextUp – a digital comedy club where you can stream instantly over 120 comedy specials from some of the exciting names in comedy. Oh, and there’s a 7 day free trial.