The Melbourne International Comedy Festival (MICF) is the largest stand-alone comedy festival and the second-largest international comedy festival in the world. Established in 1987, it takes place annually in Melbourne over four weeks, typically starting in March and running through to April. The Melbourne Town Hall has served as the festival hub since the early 1990s, but performances are held in many venues throughout the city.
The MICF plays host to hundreds of local and international artists; in 2018 the festival listed over 550 shows, 6,700 performances (including more than 160 free performances) by 3,500 artists. Although it is mainly a vehicle for stand-up and cabaret acts, the festival has also included sketch shows, plays, improvisational theatre, debates, musical shows and art exhibitions.
The televised Gala is one of the festival's flagship event, showcasing short performances from many headline and award-winning comics. Other popular events include The Great Debate, a televised comedy debate, the Opening Night Super Show, and Upfront, a night of performances exclusively featuring female comedians.
The Festival also produces three flagship development programs: Raw Comedy, Australia's biggest open mic competition; Class Clowns, a national comedy competition for high school students, an Indigenous comedy competition that celebrates the unique humour of Indigenous Australians.
The Festival also undertakes an annual national roadshow, showcasing festival highlights in regional towns across Australia.
According to en.wikipedia