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Operation IRIS: How Commercialisation has Impacted Creativity with British Stand-Up Comedy

Wassell, Ashley Steven (2021) Operation IRIS: How Commercialisation has Impacted Creativity with British Stand-Up Comedy. Master of Arts by Research (MARes) thesis, University of Kent,. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.88279) (KAR id:88279)

Language: English

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In December 1993, Rob Newman and David Baddiel became the first comedy act to perform at Wembley Arena as part of a live tour. In response to the perceived glamour of this event and the adulation that several artists received during this time, journalists declared that comedy had become 'the new rock 'n' roll'. However, below the surface something had changed within stand-up comedy and over time, management companies took a firmer grip of the industry, controlling the careers of their artists and the stand-up output of mainstream broadcasters. An increase in the television exposure that high-profile artists now receive has created a pressure to remain fresh with new material for each appearance. As a consequence, many performers use third-party writers. What is now a common and accepted practice, is at odds with the ethos that alternative comedy stood for, where the artist was the writer, performer and director. Through research that encompasses newspaper articles, autobiography and private interviews, this thesis asks: How has commercialisation impacted creativity within British stand-up? After establishing how the impact is felt by artists on the lowest rungs of the 'career ladder', I present a manifesto, outlining the principles that should be adhered to if stand-up is to become exciting once more.

Item Type: Thesis (Master of Arts by Research (MARes))
Thesis advisor: Double, Oliver
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.88279
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1969.C65 Comedy acts. Stand-up comedy
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > School of Arts
SWORD Depositor: System Moodle
Depositing User: System Moodle
Date Deposited: 20 May 2021 09:10 UTC
Last Modified: 21 May 2021 10:26 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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