Catherine Tate

The Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Awards: the Nominees, Various venues,

The shortlist meeting for the awards this year was record-breakingly lengthy and no wonder, what with a rather unwieldy list of eight newcomer nominees. Many of the buzz acts made the cut, and of the main six nominees (Adam Riches, Andrew Maxwell, Chris Ramsey, Josie Long, Nick Helm and Sam Simmons), four have already been reviewed on this page and Simmons is covered below.

The Diary: Patrick Barlow's Star Child; Belarus Free Theatre; Jessica

London's theatres can draw a glittering crowd of guests when they want to but how deep are their pockets? We'll find out on 5 December when Theatreland hosts not one but two VIP charity galas in a dramatic date clash. In the red corner, the Almeida Theatre will stage Star Child in aid of the Art Room Charity. Catherine Tate, Stephen Mangan and Juliet Stevenson will all star in Patrick Barlow's modern-day nativity while Stephen Fry – who else? – will play a "disgruntled" God. Tickets: £75 (including post-show champagne). Meanwhile, in the blue (orange?) corner, the Young Vic will host a benefit for the Belarus Free Theatre and Index on Censorship, with tickets priced for the people at £25-45. Jude Law, Ian McKellen and Sam West are signed up as guest stars for the night, timed to chime with the Belarusian elections on 19 December. Shame they didn't check the theatre calendar too.

Broad comedy: A new wave of funny women

Forget French and Saunders. There's a new wave of funny women hitting British television screens. Gerard Gilbert introduces the best of the next generation

Twelve TV treats of Christmas

Gerard Gilbert peeps under the bonnet in 'Cranford' and takes a trip with the Time Lord in a selection of the best yuletide viewing

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Kate Long: A handbook for success

The author of The Bad Mother's Handbook, Kate Long turns out to be more yummy than scummy mummy. But, she tells Emma Hagestadt, just don't call her lucky