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Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Awards 2010 - ‘Best Newcomer’ Nominee
“Imran Yusuf's show heralds the birth of a new comedy star” Time Out
“An hour of cheek and charm”The Independent
Imran Yusuf is renowned for his stinging, lyrical street-slang verbiage and super-high energy performance. Fast and furious yet charmingly endearing, his is a unique voice on the comedy circuit.
Born in Mombasa, Kenya and raised in the UK with a brief stint at school in the USA, Imran has travelled much of the world including Israel/Palestine, Jordan and Saudi Arabia during the Lebanon Crisis in 2006. His work has been inspired by this rich multicultural background, giving him a youthful, energetic and highly original voice that embodies the multi-cultural wealth that exists in modern Britain.
He seamlessly switches between styles with graceful fluidity, repeatedly delivering heavy-weight punch lines with enormous panache. His seemingly light-hearted satire is mixed with hard-hitting topical commentary on contemporary issues that culminate into a tour de force of comedy offering an all-embracing sentiment in his trademark styling.
Imran’s initial ambition was to become a video games designer and after working for some of the top companies in the world, his creative aspirations finally gravitated towards the world of stand-up comedy. Following a period of clinical depression when he was 25 he set out to reclaim his life and career through unwavering self-belief, outrageous ambition and incredible hard work. Over the last few years he has won over the hearts and minds of a very broad audience, illustrating that absolutely anything is possible.
In 2010, Imran presented his debut solo show at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The show, An Audience with Imran Yusuf, was part of the Laughing Horse Free Festival and it was Imran’s intention to develop his craft and material at the Fringe whilst at the same time keeping under the radar of the UK Comedy Industry and Press. However, word about the show got out and within a week Imran had gained the first of a collection of 5 star reviews, which led to him being nominated for Best Newcomer in the Fosters Edinburgh Comedy Award 2010 (He was the first performer from The Free Festival to be nominated in the history of the Awards). All of this whilst fasting between sunrise and sunset in observation of Ramadan.
Imran’s TV debut was also made shortly after the festival appearing on Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Road Show (BBC1) and the Edinburgh Comedy Gala (BBC3) broadcast in September 2010.
Currently working on a theatre tour and various TV and radio projects, expect to see and hear a lot more from Imran as he continues to cut at the very edge of British comedy.
EDINBURGH SHOW REVIEWS 2010: An Audience with Imran Yusuf
"Imran Yusuf's show heralds the birth of a new comedy star. Intelligent, thought provoking and laugh out loud funny it's a glorious debut." Time Out
"Imran Yusuf has to be one of the most captivating, energetic, and animated stand up comedians I’ve ever seen" The New Current
"He would be broadly described as 'political comedy', but he in fact comes across not as political but as deeply human...add to this a tremendous physicality and a joyful glint in his eye, and it's easy to see why I came out of the show somewhat in love with him." The Skinny
"an hour of cheek and charm" The Independent
"...there’s is no doubting his talent. As he says, catch him before you have to pay for the privilege" The Arts Desk
“This charismatic Kenyan-born Londoner is so intent on giving audiences a good time, he smuggles through shrewd observations about multiculturalism and modern life without you even noticing.” The Telegraph
"It's like watching Eminem do stand-up" Terry Alderton
“The New KING of Comedy” Eastern Eye
"Sunday was very good. Imran Yusuf’s jokes were pitched at just the right level...he was very funny." Yusuf Islam Foundation