Arts and Entertainment Laughing all the way...: Michael McIntyre's latest tour raked in £21m

The comedian says he is 'overwhelmingly excited' about the show

Cresswell (left), with his young brother, Luke, creator of 'Stomp'

Addison Cresswell: Talent-spotter who brought a string of comedians to the fore and forged a new format for television comedy

By the time of his sudden death, Addison Cresswell was undeniably a captain of the British comedy industry. Tall, fast-talking, dapper and not averse to thumping tables to make a point, the power he wielded as director of the comedy management agency Off The Kerb gained him a fearsome reputation, and one of which he was well aware. In 2000, he brought up his having been described as "the Darth Vader of the Fringe" before his interviewer had a chance to. His philosophy was this: "Small acts feed off the big ones and you need a few big names to make people feel it's worth going to."

Christmas cheer? Simon Amstell

The week in comedy: 'Tis the season to buy jolly DVDs

It was Super Monday this week – the comedy industry's equivalent to Super Thursday, when publishers flood the bookshops with celebrity memoirs and other sure-sellers for the festive market. So on Monday DVDs by Miranda Hart, Reginald D Hunter, Micky Flanagan, Jack Dee, Eddie Izzard, Jimmy Carr, Bill Bailey, Seann Walsh, Keith Lemon and others hit the shelves.

The Russell Brand effect: the mystery explained

Putting to one side for a second that Brand is extremely clever and funny, why do women find this scruffy, skinny, messy-haired effeminate so irresistible?

Nick Helm pays homage to Evel Knievel in his brilliant Edinburgh show

Edinburgh Festival 2013 comedy review: Nick Helm strips down physically and emotionally

Comedian thoroughly earning his award nomination

Bridget Christie – 'A Bic for Her'

Edinburgh Fringe Comedy Awards stand up for stand-up

Stand-up has returned to dominate Edinburgh’s showcase comedy awards after a big year for mime in 2012, with one shortlisted comedian even bringing back mother-in-law jokes.

The Voice scored its lowest viewing figures for the current series last night

Even with no Britain's Got Talent, The Voice suffers series-low viewing figures

Over on ITV, the Champions League final pulled in 3.5 million viewers

How We Met: Zoe Lyons & Kerry Godliman

'She'd say, "Come on, yank yourself up and keep going!" Then I'd have a cry'

Frontrunners for this year's laftas

Fresh Meat, Frankie Boyle, Keith Lemon and Rylan in the front running for this year's Laftas

The 'good, the tanned and the ugly' up for this year's comic alternative to the Baftas

Stewart Lee has accused the makers of Britain’s most popular comedy shows of featuring a “tiny coterie” of acts who are also their clients

Stewart Lee is not amused at monopoly control of TV comedy

Comedian attacks production companies behind popular shows for simply employing their own clients

Michael McIntyre, The O2, London

If there had been a spot for stand-up in the London 2012 closing ceremonies, it would surely have gone to Michael McIntyre.

Ghost Stories

Alice Jones' Arts Diary: A new haunt in Moscow for Nyman and Dyson's spooky smash-hit

Abandoned warehouses, monstrous babies and dry ice are scary in any language, it seems.

Josh Widdicombe

Exclusive interview with Josh Widdicombe

Sarah Marsh talks to Josh Widdicombe about gigging with Michael McIntyre, future plans and why comedians are insecure.

The hottest ticket in comedy? Comedians' favourite is set to return

He has been called the comedian's comedian, a 21st-century raconteur who avoids the limelight by shunning profile-raising TV work. Now Daniel Kitson is returning to stand-up after a three-year absence, sparking a frenzy for tickets to watch him test his fresh material.

Being Modern: Arena comedy

You see those two tiny dots in the distance? That's you, that is. Well, it was if "you" were Rob Newman and David Baddiel. Oh, how we chuckled at their "History Today" sketches in the early 1990s. How we roared as they took their shtick to Wembley Arena, becoming the first comedians to fill its 12,000 seats. How we wept when we realised we were sat so far from the stage that they might as well have been sarcastic marionettes.

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The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor