‘2023 Is The Year Of Comedy’ At The O2

Just For Laughs, O2 Arena, Friday 3rd March 2023
London-based, Canadian comedian Katherine Ryan on stage at this year’s premiere of Just For Laughs London. (Picture by Dan Reid)

With over 30 comedy events booked at The O2 arena in 2023 alone, it marks “the biggest year for comedy ever at the world-famous venue,” according to a press release.

Headline performances in 2023 include comedy superstars Peter Kay, Micky Flanagan, Kevin Hart, Trevor Noah, Gabriel Iglesias, and more. Peter Kay will be bringing his first stand-up show in twelve years to The O2 with a monthly residency, starting June 3, with one show slotted each month through April 2025. It not only makes Kay the first artist to perform a monthly residency at the iconic building, but also secured his membership in The O2’s “21 Club,” reserved for artists, who’ve accumulated 21 performances at the O2 across their career. Kay’s monthly residency had already sold over 300,000 tickets at the time of writing.

Micky Flanagan, who’s right in the middle of a nine-date run, which kicked off May 11, and finishes June 2, is also in the club, which is named after Prince’s sold out 21-night run in 2007. Other members are Michael Bublé, Take That, One Direction, Drake, Young Voices, and Michael McIntyre. Their achievements are represented by indivdual keys displayed on the walk to stage at The O2, Peter Kay’s being the latest addition.

Kevin Hart performed at the building April 27-28, and March saw the inaugural Just For Laughs London premier across multiple venues at The O2, with headline performances from Graham Norton, Ryan Reynolds, Joe Lycett, Katharine Ryan, and more. Comedy makes up 15% of the venue’s 2023 program.

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Jack Whitehall (July 14-16), and Trevor Noah (Nov. 23-15) are down for three shows each, Gabriel Iglesias comes to London Oct. 6, and the 2024 calendar already lists Michael McIntyre (April 5-13, 2024), and Romesh Ranganathan (May 24-25, 2024).

The O2’s heart is still music, and the comedy lineup only adds to a list of superstars taking to the stage this year, including Madonna, SZA, Shania Twain, Blink-182, S Club, and many more. The venue also hosts the UFC March 18, for the organization’s second-ever UK numbered event.

Emma Bownes, VP of venue programming, Europe, at The O2, commented, “from cross-campus festivals, to live podcast events and stand-up shows from some of the best in the business, it really feels like 2023 is the year of comedy at The O2. We’ve seen some incredible ticket sales for comedy this year – with Peter Kay’s monthly residency continuing to be in high-demand right through to 2025, and Micky Flanagan bringing nine out of this world shows to us in May and June of this year. We’re really thrilled to welcome so many of the best comedians in the world to The O2 and looking forward to shows still to come this year with Jack Whitehall, Trevor Noah and Gabriel Iglesias”.

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