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New Comedy Fest General Manager Appointed

New Comedy Fest General Manager Serious About Championing the Art of Laughter

The New Zealand Comedy Trust is delighted to announce Lauren Whitney as the new General Manager.

Lauren has been with the Trust and working on the NZ International Comedy Festival for the last eight years and has a great understanding of the comedy industry, its needs and its potential.

Lauren joined the Comedy Trust as the Marketing & Sponsorship Manager in 2009, and most recently has held the role of Associate Director. She has evolved the NZ International Comedy Festival brand through design, marketing and publicity and has empowered a small team to achieve excellent results. The Comedy Festival was this year recognised outside of the industry winning Silver and Bronze Best Design Awards for its marketing campaign. Lauren has also been responsible for driving much of the Festival’s revenue through sponsorship, funding and ticket sales.

Across her career Lauren has enjoyed working closely with comedians, musicians and arts-industry practitioners to enhance their skills and facilitate the development of their professional brands to build audiences.

“Working collaboratively with comedians and the great people that support them behind the scenes is something I am hugely passionate about. The comedy industry in New Zealand is developing and succeeding at an exciting rate, and it is wonderful to be part of the career journey with comedians. Comedy has the opportunity to tell stories from many different voices and perspectives, and it is an honour to work within the industry to help facilitate that.” says Lauren Whitney.

Lauren’s focus is to create a positive, inspirational and collaborative culture for the Festival and the wider industry. She has shown through her work at the Trust she is able to unite a diverse group of stakeholders including: artists, promoters, sponsors, venues, funders, media and suppliers, to achieve a common goal. Sharing her love of comedy, she has worked hard to put live comedy at the forefront of audiences’ choices and engages with performers to help them deliver a great experience.

New Zealand Comedy Trust Board Chair Carole Pedder says “Lauren brings with her a huge amount of energy and enthusiasm that she has used to build an exceptional reputation within the comedy community. Her passion for comedy and her level of industry experience will pave the way forward to improve the delivery of the trust directives across all areas. I look forward to seeing Lauren thrive in her new role and want to congratulate her on her appointment”

The full Festival programme will be announced in early March and the NZ International Comedy Festival will run from 26 April to 20 May 2018.


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