Josie Long

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Josie Long
Josie Long 2013.jpg
Long at Long Division Festival in June 2013
Born (1982-04-17) 17 April 1982 (age 39)
Sidcup, London, England
MediumStand-up, television, radio, film
Alma mater Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford
Years active1990s–present
Partner(s) Jonny Donahoe
Website OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg

Josie Long (born 17 April 1982) is a British comedian. [1] She started performing as a stand-up at the age of 14 and won the BBC New Comedy Awards at 17.


In 2006, she won the If.comeddies Best Newcomer award at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for her show Kindness and Exuberance. She has been nominated for the Edinburgh Comedy Award for Best Show three times. In 2012, Long and director Doug King produced two short comedy films in Glasgow called Let's Go Swimming and Romance and Adventure, which were nominated for a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Award.

Early life and education

Long was born in Sidcup and spent her early life in Orpington, London, [2] where she attended Newstead Wood School for Girls. She began performing stand-up comedy at 14, winning the BBC New Comedy Awards at the age of 17. Long attended Michael Knighton's comedy course in Beckenham, London. At 18 she gave up stand-up whilst attending Lady Margaret Hall, University of Oxford, ran experimental comedy clubs, and graduated with a degree in English. [3]


After graduating Long returned to live stand-up, supporting Stewart Lee on his spring 2005 tour. [4] In March that year, Long was named Best Newcomer at the 2005 Chortle Awards. [5]

She contributed sketches and one-liners to BBC Radio One's 2004/05 comedy show, The Milk Run [1] with Andrew O'Neill. One edition of the show was entirely given over to a script she co-wrote with her friend Dan Harkin, entitled The Adventures Of Marco Polo .

In 2005 she began publishing a fanzine, Drawing Moustaches in Magazines Monthly Magazine (Bi-Monthly), which is distributed for free, and has featured contributions from Robin Ince, Kevin Eldon and Stewart Lee, as well as Danielle Ward and Isy Suttie. [6]

She appeared in the show An Audience With Dan Nightingale & Josie Long with Mancunian comic Dan Nightingale, at the Café Royal, at the 2005 Edinburgh Fringe. In 2006 she won the If.comedies Best Newcomer award at the Fringe for her show Kindness and Exuberance. In her 2007/2008 tour Trying is Good her act often involved drawing a sea scene on her arms and stomach. Long has a love of applique and the V&A Museum, and live Boggle contests sometimes form a part of her performances.

Long in 2010 Josie Long (cropped).jpg
Long in 2010

As of 2014 she has performed seven solo shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and performed five subsequent UK tours in springs 2007, 2008 and 2009, Autumn 2010 and spring 2012. She has appeared at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (2007–10), the Adelaide Fringe Festival (2008), the New Zealand Comedy Festival (2008, 2010) and the Montreal Just For Laughs Festival (2008). Her show, Trying is Good was nominated for the Barry Award in Melbourne 2008. In 2009 she toured her show All of the Planet's Wonders, playing 14 dates during February and March. Her radio series based on the show, Josie Long: All of the Planet's Wonders was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in early 2009. [7]

Long has been nominated for the Edinburgh Comedy Award for Best Show three times, with her 2010 show, Be Honourable!, 2011's The Future Is Another Place and 2012's Romance & Adventure. [8] Recordings of the former two were released on a cassette album entitled Lost Cats. [9]

Along with fellow comics Hils Barker, Steve Hall and James Sherwood, she founded the All-Singing, All-Dancing Competitive News Bonanza, a live topical panel show that ran at the Red Lion pub in Soho in 2004/05, and at the Arts Theatre Club in Soho in 2006. In 2006 she also launched her own monthly comedy clubs, the Sunday Night Adventure Club, at the ABC Café in Crystal Palace, London (later at the Black Sheep pub), and The OK Club at the Boogaloo pub in Highgate, North London. She currently runs and hosts "The Lost Treasures of the Black Heart" comedy club in Camden Town, which is recorded and made available as a podcast.

Long has written for the Channel 4 teen comedy-drama series Skins . She has also appeared in an online webisode and episodes five and 10 of the second series of the show, in which she plays a college careers adviser, and appeared again in episode five of the third series, reprising that role, this time, however, in another career. She makes a return appearance in series six as the college guidance counsellor in episode one.

She has also been involved in BBC Switch, on a weekly mini-feature called Josie Long's Confuse the Teacher Feature, where a word is read out by Long for young people listening to the show to include in their homework, which was formed after her suggestion of the idea during an interview on the show with Annie Mac.

She also appeared regularly in Robin Ince's podcast Show & Tell, now called Robin and Josie's Utter Shambles, co-hosted the Resonance FM show I, DJ with Danielle Ward and Isy Suttie, and guested on Answer Me This! podcast. She has also DJ-ed at the London indiepop club night Scared To Dance. [10] She appeared on the Jon Richardson Show on 27 July 2008 and again on 15 February 2009. On 9 October 2008 she appeared on Never Mind the Buzzcocks in the second programme of the 22nd series. On 19 January 2009 she appeared on the radio panel game Just a Minute . [11] She appeared in Australian improvised-comedy show Thank God You're Here twice, the first of which aired on 6 May 2009. On 5 July 2009 she appeared on Sunday Night Show on Absolute Radio with Iain Lee. On 14 and 28 July 2009 she appeared on Charlie Brooker's Channel 4 show You Have Been Watching .

On 21 and 23 August 2009 Long performed at the Green Man Festival. On 15 November 2009, Long was the guest on the Dave Gorman radio show on Absolute Radio and the subsequent podcast of the show, before making her second appearance with Iain Lee, this time on Iain Lee's 2 Hour Long Late Night Radio Show, on the same station eight days later. She occasionally wrote for Alan Moore's underground magazine Dodgem Logic .

On 15 January 2010 she was a contestant on Channel 4's panel show 8 Out of 10 Cats . On 18 March 2010 she appeared on the BBC Two comedy quiz TV programme show The Bubble , during which she notably wore a garment displaying Nye Bevan-related witticisms. She wrote and performed three short plays as part of BBC Radio 4's Afternoon Play series, including one about apostrophes.

Since 2010, Long has been involved with the anti–tax-avoidance activist group UK Uncut, and in 2011 co-founded The Arts Emergency Service, [12] a charity helping young people in education. She has on occasion promoted these groups through her stand-up and has also performed stand-up at protests and occupations, including the 2011 Hetherington House Occupation.

Long presented a Saturday morning radio show with Andrew Collins on BBC 6 Music [13] and runs a monthly comedy club at The Black Heart in Camden Town, recordings of which are used for her new podcast The Lost Treasures of the Black Heart. [14] Since 2013 she has been the presenter on BBC Radio 4's Short Cuts, [15] which was nominated for Best Speech Programme at the Radio Academy Awards in 2014. [16]

Josie Long performing at Lost Treasures of the Black Heart in London in September 2013 Josie Long performing at Lost Treasures of the Black Heart in London on the 11th of September 2013 2.JPG
Josie Long performing at Lost Treasures of the Black Heart in London in September 2013

In 2012, Long toured the UK with Grace Petrie, Tom Parry and the activism group UK Uncut to protest against public-sector government funding cuts. [17] Long and director Doug King also produced two short comedy films in Glasgow called Let's Go Swimming and Romance and Adventure, which were nominated for a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Award. The pair toured independent cinemas across the UK during Autumn 2013. [18]

Long has been a Doctor Who fan since she was a child [19] and she is interviewed for the special features of several classic series DVD releases, including Nightmare of Eden and Dragonfire .

In 2018, Long and Jonny Donahoe performed a comedy show together based around parenting and expecting the birth of their daughter. [20] They subsequently turned the show into a podcast, Josie & Jonny Are Having a Baby (With You!). [21] Drawing on this, Long's show at the 2019 Edinburgh Fringe, Tender, discussed the subject of childbirth and optimism about the future. A review in Chortle noted that "[the] whole act is well refined with funny voice breaks,  emotional act-outs, exaggerations and unexpected callbacks. .... So much is covered in this hour, without it becoming wordy, overlong or a chore. And certainly without losing the funny, which it has in abundance." [22] [23]

Also in 2019 Long and Liam Williams wrote and started in Perimeter, a dystopian play about a city divided into rich and poor areas by a giant fence. The play was broadcast as part of Radio 4's Dangerous Visions series. [24] The same year, Long also presented a new podcast for English Heritage, Speaking with Shadows; the podcast won in the 'Contribution to Heritage' category at the UK Heritage Awards. [25] [26] In 2020, Long took her show Tender on tour around the UK. [27]

During the week beginning 14 December 2020, Long appeared as one of the week's contestants on Richard Osman's House of Games.

Personal life

On 28 May 2018, Long had a daughter with her partner, comedian Jonny Donahoe. [28]

Live credits

Radio credits

Television credits

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Preceded by
Waen Shepherd
Chortle Awards Best Newcomer
Succeeded by
James Branch
Preceded by
Tim Minchin
Edinburgh Fringe Best Comedy Newcomer
Succeeded by
Tom Basden