25 of the Best Irish Comedians: The Irish Humour

Updated On: November 24, 2022

Irish Comedians Irish Comedy

When people think of Ireland, they often remember our great sense of humour and fun nature. Irish humour is famous around the world for its dry and sarcastic wit, in this blog you will find the most famous Irish comedians who fully embrace the Irish humour.

Irish people have an incredible ability to make fun of themselves while also making others laugh. Irish humour in that sense is unique. Whether you call it “banter” or “having the craic”, humour is something that every Irish person seems to know from the moment they are born, so it’s really no shock that some of the world’s best and most loved comedians come from Ireland.

A List of Some of the Best and Most iconic Irish Comedians

At the Moment, Irish comedy seems to be at the top of its game, thriving, not just in Ireland but around the globe. Here is a list of some of the most fascinating Irish comedians past and present.

25. Maeve Higgins

Irish comedian and Cobh native Maeve Higgins always had aspirations of moving to New York City to pursue her lifelong dreams of writing. As she reached 31, life in Ireland was becoming more and more restricted in opportunities. So, she made the brave decision to finally head to the big apple on the back of her successful Irish TV show “Fancy Vittles”.

New York offered Maeve more opportunities for as a writer. The comedy scene in New York at the time was prosperous, making it a great place for aspiring comedians to be.

While there, Meave started up a podcast to capture the adventures and life in her newfound home. She has written about her experiences in America in her book, “Maeve In America: Essays by a Girl from Somewhere Else”.

Initially, she reluctant to start a podcast feeling that it was the typical thing most comedians do. Higgins wanted to do something different, deciding to make something more familiar to her instead of a generic comedy podcast.

As a reault, “Meave in America” was born, a podcast focusing on the immigration experience in the U.S. Each episode included a personal story from people who had made the decision to leave their home to pursue a new life in the USA.

The podcast was successful due to Maeve’s ability to get the best from her guests and share their most touching stories, an experience that is both vulnerable, relatable and hilarious.

Success at Home for Irish Comedian

Meave was born in Cobh in County Cork, and is known for her brilliant quick wit. She first took to the comedy stage in 2005 before becoming a famous Irish comedian praised for her stand up.

Throughout Maeve’s’ career, she has performed in a variety of comedy festivals all around the globe. Appearing on the radio including Today FM where she made her debut show. Maeve has also appeared in the nostalgic Irish Comedy Skit show ‘Naked Camera’. Furthermore, in 2009 she gifted us with her show ‘Meave Higgins’ Fancy Vittles’.

In 2019 Maeve starred alongside Will Forte in her 2019 big screen debut for ‘Extra Ordinary’.

Since 2018 Maeve has hosted another podcast with first female president of Ireland and UN High Commissioner Mary Robinson as well as producer Thimali Kodikara.

Maeve still lives in New York, intertwining her life as a writer and comedian. She is surely living the American dream!

There are so many hilarious Irish female comedians performing nowadays, who is your favourite?

Maeve performing in 2009

24. Dave Allen

Next is the brilliant Dave Allen who is known for his great storytelling skills and sharp humour. Dave Allen is an Irish comedian from the 70s who was an international success.

The Irish comic is often admired for his funny personal stories, usually told in front of a live audience. He is also famous for drinking whiskey on stage while telling anecdotes as he sat on a tall stool.

Dave Allen was born in Tallaght in Dublin on July 6, 1936. He made his first television debut on New Faces, a BBC talent show, in 1959. But ultimately he obtained his fame in Australia in 1963. This was after he hosted the ‘Tonight with Dave Allen’ talk show on Australian TV. However, the show soon was banned on Australian TV a short six months later after making crude comments on a live show.

Despite this, the show helped him to win the Variety Club’s ITV Personality of the Year Award. Following the award, he signed a contract with BBC, making him the host of a variety of new shows. This is when his iconic solo joke telling and drinking whiskey routine became famous.

Audiences loved him for his ability to highlight important topics. He offered humour on relevant topics, but could also back it up with his sharp intelligence that cut through to people, which is a special trait that many Irish comedians seem to have. The topics he joked about would have been seen as very controversial in 1970’s Ireland, a time when the Catholic church played a significant role in politics and society.

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, he toured many places performing his comedy show while also working on acting jobs. Sadly, he died on March 10, 2005, at the age of 68. He remains an unforgettable Irish comic of his time.

Are there any other Irish comedians from the 70s, that deserve a spot on our list?

David Allen

23. Gearóid Farrelly

Next, on our list of Irish Comedians is Georoid Farrelly who quit his IT job to pursue his dream of stand-up comedy. Thankfully, the comedy road has worked out well for him taking the entertainment scene by storm.

In 2008, Gearoid Farrelly began to be noticed for his comedy routines when he was a finalist on the popular ‘So You Think You’re Funny?’ competition at the Edinburgh Festival. At the same time, he won the ‘Bulmer’s Nuthin Butt Funny Newcomers competition’ in Dublin. This all made it clear to Gearoid that he made the right decision in pursuing his lifelong dream of working in comedy.

He is a brilliant live performer who often appears in comedy festivals around Ireland. He has toured with comedy stars Neil Delamere in Ireland and Sarah Millican in the UK and has also delved into the world of podcasts.

Gearoid Farrelly

22. PJ Gallagher

Next on our list of Irish Comedians is PJ Gallagher who is Ireland’s cherished funny man. Previously a co-host on PJ & Damian In The Morning with Damian Farrelly on Classic Hits 4FM, Gallagher has since moved on to Radio Nova hosting the Morning Glory show from 6am – 10am Monday – Friday. You can also catch him in the hit Irish Television show ‘The Young Offenders’ on RTÉ and BBC.

Gallagher is most commonly known for portraying a variety of hilarious characters on the popular Irish TV Show ‘Naked Camera’. In 2008, he went across to America to film a new series called ‘Makin’ Jake’ about his alter ego Jake Stevens. Then in 2011, Gallagher introduced another brilliant sketch show, ‘Meet Your Neighbours’.

He has quickly become one of Ireland’s most recognised comics with his many television appearances.

PJ is pictured above on the right, in character and with the rest of the Young Offenders Cast!

21. Mark Hayes

Cork Native, Mark Hayes has really made a name for himself, not just in Ireland but over in America. He has been described as one of Ireland’s craziest & wittiest comedians, and a great writer & poet.

Not only is he thriving in the comedy world, but he is also the author of three great books. His book ‘RanDumb: The Adventures of an Irish Guy in LA’ was number one on Amazon Humour.

Mark also writes a weekly column for the Irish Examiner discussing life in Los Angeles as an Irish man. However, that isn’t all, Hayes has his own show “Luck of the Irish Night” at the Laughing Factory every Friday night. In LA, you’ll usually find him performing all around the place opening for comedian Chris D’Elia.

Mark is a man of many talents, also writing scripts and producing comedy sketches on YouTube. So, be sure to check out his comical work for a few laughs.

20. Hal Roach

Next on our list of Irish Comedians is Waterford-born entertainer Hal Roach. He spent over 60 amazing years working within the entertainment industry. Before comedy, he specialised in magic and travelled with an illusionist performing at shows. As he grew older, he moved on to comedy and worked as a comedian in Jury’s Cabaret in Dublin.

His time as a residence comedian at the hotel earned him a place in the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest-running engagement of a comedian in the same venue. Incredibly, he worked there for 26 years.

Hal was very popular with Irish-American tourists visiting Ireland. A lot of his jokes and stories were influenced by stereotypical ideas of Ireland. During his time as a comedian, his live shows were released on Cassettes and CDs to much success.

Besides comedy, he also wrote a variety of books aimed towards the Irish-American market which became popular. He is often acknowledged for helping to influence the new wave of Irish comedians and performers.

Classic Hal Roach

19. Edwin Sammon

Edwin Sammon originally from Offaly has gained a lot of praise as a comedian over the last couple of years. Offering something different, he is often described as unpredictable and loves to please the crowd. His unique style has seen him be awarded the Tedfest Golden Toilet Duck award in 2011.

Winning the award has helped him to support other popular comedians, such as Jason Byrns and Phil Jupitus. He has performed at big comedy festivals around the country and across the water.

Edwin is pretty new to the comedy scene, starting his career off in 2011 at local comedy clubs. In recent years, he has gained much success such as getting a permanent role on RTEs sitcom ‘Bridget and Eamon’.

Sammon survived cancer while working as a stand-up, his dark humour about his health created an impactful show, that both reminded people about the important things in life, and allowed them to laugh along with the comic at topics that are usually taken very seriously. His outlook while humorous highlights the courage it takes to be vulnerable and talk about difficult topics – something that is admirable even without a live audience.

Edwin is one to watch out for and we see great things happening in the comedy world for him.

18. Dylan Moran

The next Irish comedian to make it on our list is Navan man Dylan Moran, also known for his writing, acting, and filmmaking talents. Dylan is popular for his UK sitcom ‘Black Books’ which he co-wrote and acted in. Many people also know Dylan from his work with Simon Pegg in the popular films ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Run Fatboy Run’, as well as 1999’s rom-com Notting Hill

In 2008, he was one of two lead characters in the Irish black comedy titled ‘A Film with Me in it’. You will find him performing his stand up comedy routines at national and international festivals. In 2015, he took his recent stand-up show “Off The Hook” over to South Africa, he had three sold-out shows in the country’s National Arts Festival.

An early performance by Dylan Moran in ’98

17. Tara Flynn

Next up is the passionate Irish comedian Tara Flynn who is definitely one to watch out for in the coming years. A triple threat by all means; Flynn is a brilliant writer, a great actress, and a sharp comedian.

Tara Flynn first got recognised for her stand up routines before becoming part of comedy panel shows, like Irish Pictorial Weekly. She has also written one brilliant comedy book called ‘You’re Grand: the Irishwoman’s Secret Guide to Life.’

While she does love to make people laugh, she uses her celebrity platform also for activism. She is often noted for her voice in campaigning for women’s rights and the repeal of Ireland’s eight amendment.

Make sure to check out her podcast ‘Taranoia: the Tara Flynn podcast’. In her podcast, she opens up about her fears and insecurities in a relatable fashion.

Irish stand-up comedians

16. Eleanor Tiernan

Another female Irish comedian on our list is Eleanor Tiernan who left her civil engineering training to pursue stand up comedy. Just one year later, she made an appearance on RTE’s ‘The Liffey Laughs’ and BBC’s ‘One Night Stand.’

Although starting her comedy career in Ireland, Eleanor soon got recognised internationally. She was invited to perform at the ‘Montreal Just For Laughs’ festival in Canada. This saw her gaining popularity with a Canadian and American audience.

Afterwards, she joined the team of RTE’s political satire show ‘Irish Pictorial Weekly’ which ran until 2016. While on the show, one of her comedy sketches went viral after it was mistaken for a real news report.

Eleanor has also taken part in other RTE comedy and sketch shows. Her strong stage presence and captivating storytelling have helped to make the audience love her.

As a writer and actress Eleanor has found continued success with TV shows such as ‘Holding’ and a podcast called ‘Hidden Ireland’.

Eleanor Tiernan Stand Up in 2018

15. Connor Sketches

New Irish Comedians may find that it takes years to break into the comedy circuit as a successful circut regular, but that isn’t always the case as proven by our next comic. Connor Moore is a comedian who produces sketches imitating some of Irelands most famous faces in pop-culture, entertainment, sport and television, under the name of Connor Sketches.

Moore featured on The Sunday Game’s Up for the Match with hilarious parodies of our favourite faces in the GAA.

Connor Sketches imitating various sports pundits (some of whom are at the table!)

14 Kevin McGahren

Cavan Man Kevin McGahren is best known for hosting RTÉs ‘Republic of Telly’ a satirical review of the week in Television, as well as his appearance on the hit TV show ‘The Hardy Bucks’. McGahren is a presenter, writer, comedian and actor with an impressive resumé.

The TV show ‘Weird America’ in 2017 was praised for McGahren’s interviewing technique, particularly his ability to discuss difficult topics in a laidback manner.

During the Covid pandemic, McGahren released a series called ‘Kevin Paints’. Putting his animation degree to good use, the comedian interviewed various Irish celebrities including Derry Girl Actress Saoirse-Monica Jackson, comedians Pat Shortt and Joanne McNally as well as artist Don Conroy. The idea is simple but fresh and unique; McGahren interviews a celebrity while painting their portrait. The result is a conversational laid back interview with plenty of craic.

Kevin has delved into the world of drama, appearing in RTÉ’s ‘Smother’ in 2021/22. McGahren is touring Ireland in 2022 called ‘Showing Off’!

13 Lisa McGee

Lisa McGee is the creator of the hit TV series Derry Girls, a new intro into Irish sit-com, but an instant classic nonetheless. McGee wrote and produced the semi-autobiographical series about life in Derry in the 90’s.

McGee has won many awards for her work including the Writers Guild of Ireland award for ‘Best 2019 Television Script’ with Derry Girls.

12 Ardal O’Hanlon

Monaghan born Ardal O’Hanlon is best known for his role as Fr. Dougal McGuire in Father Ted. Alongside Kevin Gildea and Barry Murphy, O’Hanlon founded the Comedy Cellar in Dublin, and is recognised as one of the main people who helped to start the comedy scene in Dublin.

Other notable TV appearances include George Sunday in ‘My Hero’ and DI Jack Mooney in ‘Death in Paradise’ as well as a recent appearance in s13 of Taskmaster. With many awards and nominations as well as an extensive stand up career and a significant role in the foundation of the Irish comedy scene, O’Hanlon earns a well deserved place on our list of comics.

O’Hanlon discussing his favourite moments on Father Ted

11 Chris O’Dowd

Chris O’Dowd is a Roscommon native with an impressive career in comedy and acting. O’Dowd was born in Boyle in 1979.

His most notable role is Roy Trenneman in the IT Crowd (2016-2013). O’Dowd has also featured in Bridesmaids (2011) This is 40 (2012), Monsters vs. Aliens (2013-2014), Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (2016), Loving Vincent (2017), Molly’s Game (2017), Mary Poppins Returns (2018) and even an episode of the Simpsons.

Another Highlight of O’Dowd’s career is the hit TV series Moone Boy, where O’Dowd portrays the imaginary friend of Martin Moone a young boy growing up in small-town Ireland in the 1990’s. O’Dowd created and co-wrote the show which is well worth a watch for any comedy lovers.

O’Dowd on the IT Crowd

10 Mario Rosenstock

Mario Rosenstock is one of Irelands favourite comedians so much so that he had his own comedy show, aptly called ‘The Mario Rosenstock show’ in 2013. Rosenstock is best known for his spot on impressions of Irelands most recognisable figures. From Sport stars, to the Lord of the Dance, TV Presenters, Politicians and even the President of Ireland, no one is safe from the Comedians impressions.

Rosenstock fully commits to his act, often dressing up exactly like the person he is imitating. His comedy is a familiar favourite on Irish Television, and with podcast appearances and radio shows, he is a constant in Irish Entertainment.

How many of these impressions do you recognise?

9 Dara O’Briain

We can’t have a guide to the most talented Irish comedians without mentioning everyone’s favourite Wicklow man, Dara O’Briain. He is most famous for hosting the UK show ‘Mock of The Week’ as well as ‘Blockbusters’, ‘Robot Wars’, ‘Dara and Eds Great Big Adventure’, and so much more.

Dara first began his presenting career for Irish broadcaster RTÉ, hosting a children’s show while he was also making rounds on the Irish comedy scene, not long after he had finished studying at University College in Dublin. He became quite the star in Ireland after hosting the topical panel show ‘Don’t Feed the Gondolas‘.

In spite of his success, Dara left the show in its fifth season to pursue comedy festivals in Adelaide and Melbourne. Shortly after, he co-founded the production company ‘Happy Endings,’ one of its most famous shows in Ireland being ‘The Panel’. The show quickly became very popular and was nominated for ‘Best Entertainment Show’ at the Irish Film and Television awards.

Dara O’Briain got his big UK break in 2003 when he hosted the BBC programme ‘The Live Floor Show’. He was also a guest and a guest host on the much loved ‘Have I Got News For You’ quiz show. O’Briain would then move over to the UK full time to continue to pursue the British comedy circuit.

Dara is one of the most sought-after Irish comedian hosts in Britain and Ireland and you’ll find him touring regularily. If you can, you must check out Dara O’Briain live. This talented Irish comedian will make you cry laughing.

O’Briain began his ‘So Where Were We?’ Tour in 2021, and is set to star in season 14 of C4’s Taskmaster.

Dara O’Briain and his Tayto

8 Joanne McNally

Joanne McNally has become one of the most famous Irish comedians overseas, with sell out tours, hilarious chat show appearances, newspaper articles, and a hit documentary all under her belt.

Joanne also co-hosted ‘The Republic of Telly’.

‘Baby Hater’, a documentary created and presented by Joanne was a hit success both in Ireland and internationally. Her first one woman show ‘Bite me’ won numerous awards and was praised for its dark humour, as the comedian discusses topics that most shy away from, in an honest and hilarious fashion.

‘My Therapist Ghosted Me’ a podcast hosted by McNally and Vouge Willams, was voted the best podcast of 2022 by the Global Awards. The pod has consistently charted as the #1 podcast on Spotify since its release, rivalling the likes of ‘The 2 Johnnies Podcast’, and the ‘Why Would You Tell Me That’ comedy shows.

7. Des Bishop

Continuing on our list of some of the best Irish comedians is funny man Des Bishop. He is one of the most loved Irish comics ever. Des Bishop first appeared on the Irish comedy scene in the early 1990s. He first came to prominence with his extraordinary TV series The Des Bishop Work Experience (2004), where he lived on minimum wage in a series of different jobs in Ireland.

What many people may not know is that he moved over to Ireland at 14 years old from the United States. When he came to Ireland, he started observing and creating comic narratives of the Irish. This is believed to have helped influence his material and shape his stand-up routines later on.

In 2008 Bishop released a documentary titled ‘In The Name of the Fada’ where he attempted to become fluent in Irish, earning a much deserved IFTA. From Learning Mandarin to sharing deeply personal stories in ‘My Dad Was Almost James Bond’, Bishop has proved that he can do it all. From interesting documentaries, to moving anecdotes and sold out stand up gigs across the world, Des has just the right personality to be able to adapt to the media he is featuring in while still remaining authentic to himself.

As of 2022 Bishop has showed no signs of stepping off the stage anytime soon as he tours his ‘Mia Mamma’ show around Ireland. The Irish comediens stand up shows are defintely worth a visit if you’re a comedy fan!

Irish American comedians offer a unique yet relatable perspective on living abroad as an Irish person. They can also identify the truly irregular Irish customs that we may not notice.

Des Bishop on the Conditional Tense in Irish

6. Pat Shortt

Pat Shortt began his career in comedy as one half of the comedy duo ‘D’Unbelievables’ alongside Jon Kenny. The pair found international success with four critically acclaimed and sold out shows across Ireland, the UK, the States and Europe.

With an extensive career of successful stand up shows, Kenny has also ventured into the world of film, starring in movies such as ‘Garage’, ‘Soulboy’ and ‘Guard’.

The Tipperary born comedian is a staple of Irish sit-com, appearing in Father Ted, Mooneboy, and Frank of Ireland.

Shortts biggest success is the 3 time IFTA nominated comedy series ‘Killinaskully’, a parody of rural Ireland and the stereotypical members of the community that we all know all love.

Pat ventured into the world of music releasing ‘Jumbo Breakfast Roll’, a number one hit that went 4 times platinum. His skill as a musician is genuine as he has toured the US playing in the Brass section with Irish band The Saw Doctors.

Pat Shortt – Irish standup comedian

5. Aisling Bea

If you don’t know the next Irish comedienne then you definitely should check her work out! Aisling Bea is talented, laugh out loud funny, and very quick-witted, surely one of the funniest Irish comedians on the scene right now.

Aisling was born and bred in rural County Kildare and knew from a young age that she loved to perform to a crowd. Once she completed drama school, she spent years trying to get work into the theatre scene as a dramatic actress. However, she was cast in a comedy shows Cardinal Burns and Dead Boss in 2012. Through working on these shows, she decided to give stand up comedy a try.

It turned out to be a success for Aisling as in 2012 she won the ‘Glided Ballon So You Think You’re Funny’ award at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Also, in 2013, she was nominated for the Best Newcomer at the Edinburgh Comedy Awards for her show ‘C’est La Bea’.

These awards and nominations marked a turning point in her career. She began to appear as a regular guest on panel shows such as ‘QI’ and ‘Insert Name Here’. In 2016, she started appearing in the hit Channel 4 show ‘8 out of 10 cats’. She also spends a third of her time out in Los Angeles, doing comedy gigs, writing, and auditioning.

Bea was a hit on series 5 of Taskmaster in 2017, a comedic game show. Bea is one of many Irish comedians who feature in Mock the Week, a satirical retelling of the news of the week, alongside series regular and Irish man Ed Byrne and Wicklow born presenter Dara O’Brian.

Aisling has since gone on to create and star in ‘This Way Up’ in 2019, winning the Bafta 2020 British Academy Television Craft Award for Breakthrough Talent. A show that is equal parts hilarious and heart breaking, the relatively short series is worth a watch for the lasting impact it will leave on viewers.

You’ll be able to catch Aisling Bea in the 2019 Netflix comedy ‘Living With Yourself’ opposite Hollywood superstar Paul Rudd as well as in 2021’s ‘Home Sweet Home Alone’ produced by Disney.

In 2022, Bea appeared in Doctor Who for a New Years Special.

Aisling Bea performing in 2015

4. Tommy Tiernan

Following Farrelly, we have Tommy Tiernan who has been working in the entertainment industry for the last twenty-three years. His current job includes hosting his own chat show, stand-up, acting and writing for a newspaper. Tiernan is admired for his ability to take audiences through an emotional journey with his humour.

Tiernan is not afraid to make a fool of himself to get laughter from the audience -at times silly and serious. He often rebels against the normal view of the world in his comic routines.

Tiernan has a unique way of putting words together and bringing stories to life. Throughout his comedy routines, Tommy often gives his thoughts on family life and religion. His quirkiness, honest humour, and great storytelling are just a few reasons why people love him.

Furthermore, you can also catch Tommy Tiernan in the hit Channel 4 comedy ‘Derry Girls‘ where he plays the character of ‘Da Gerry’. If you haven’t seen the show yet, you’re in for a real treat, definitely Irish comedy at its best. He also hosts a podcast on Spotify and Apple podcasts, alongside co-hosts Hector Ó hEochagáin and Laurita Blewitt which is a treat for fans of comedy.

One of the best Irish stand up comedians in the country, A Tommy Tiernan gig is perfect for anyone who likes to have a good laugh!

Tommy Tiernan Live

As we approach our top three comedians, why not guess in the comments below who you think deserves the top spot!

3. Graham Norton

Graham Norton is undoubtedly one of Irelands most famous comedians, but his success is not by chance. A quick witted personality and excellent comedic timing has allowed Norton to interview A-listers for over 15 years on The Graham Norton Show.

He is a favourite interviewer of many celebrities due to his humour and relaxed interviewing style, there is no malice in his interviews to get a headline quote, it is more comparable to a chat with a friend and is why his guest are always so excited to feature. No one is too famous to poke fun at and its quite refreshing to see celebrities enjoy themselves in a much more relaxed setting than your average late night chat show.

In his earlier career Norton appeared as fan favourite Fr. Noel Furlong in Father Ted, and has recently appeared in Holding (2022), a TV adaption of his own book. Norton also did voice work for Disney’s ‘Soul’ in 2020.

From acting, to presenting and publishing fictional novels, Norton is surely one of Ireland’s greatest success stories.

2. Dermot Morgan

Morgan’s lead role as Father Ted in one of the most popular Irish TV shows of all times. His tragic death cut short his ambitious career, but his legacy is still strong in Ireland. The hit show is still a staple of Irish and UK television, with annual reruns and high ratings to this day.

A sit-com parodying priests and Irish life in general, Father Ted was not only hilarious but also ahead of its time, depicting the priests as morally dubious and often self serving characters. The rest of the community were typical Irish stereotypes of rural Ireland portrayed to the extreme; hilariously absurd, yet somehow relatable.

Morgan’s career had just skyrocketed with the success of Fr. Ted, and he was in talks to produce more sitcoms. The Show won 2 BAFTA’s for best comedy in 1996 and 1999, and Morgan won best actor. Morgan and Pauline McLynn won the British Television Award for Best TV Comedy Actor and Actress respectively in 1996.

Morgan again won the British Television Award for Best TV Comedy Actor posthumously in 1999. The President of Ireland Mary McAleese as well as Former President Mary Robinson were just two of many esteemed guests who attended his funeral. Today his legacy is carried on by his family as well as fans who host the ‘Ted Fest’ each year on Inis Mór.

Some of Dermot Morgans best moments on Father Ted

Honourable mentions: Brendan O’Carroll, Kevin McAleer, Bernard O’Shea, Deidre O’Keane, Oliver Callan, Neil Delamare, Alison Spittle, David O’Doherty, Ed Byrne, Jennifer Zamparelli, Fred Cooke and Frank Kelly.

1. Brendan Grace

Entertaining a nation for over 40 years, Brendan Grace is undoubtedly one of the top Irish comedians of all time, fully embracing the Irish sense of humour while adding his own distinctive twist.

One of Grace’s most popular reoccurring gags was the character of Botler, the hilarious school boy. Grace was also a gifted singer, his version of ‘combine harvester’ was a number one hit in Ireland. In fact at age 18 he formed a show band called ‘The Gingermen’ and toured Ireland, before he would tour as a comedian.

Alongside his many live shows that have since been televised, Grace appeared as Fr. Stack alongside Dermot Morgan in an episode of Father Ted as well as Big Sean in another comedy favourite Killinaskully

Grace battled illness in his final years, but continued to tour despite his difficulties. Brendan Grace passed away in 2019 aged 68, forever remembered as Irelands most popular live comedian. . Brendan’s life was described in detail by the Irish Times in an obituary after his death.

Brendan Grace Live

Who are your favourite funny Irish comedians? Is it someone on our Irish comedians list or have we forgotten about a comic? Please share with us in the comments below. 

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