The 44th edition of the Leids Cabaret Festival, one of the four major nightclub festivals in the Netherlands, has been cancelled. The competition was scheduled to take place in February 2023. But the organization states that very few participants with sufficient potential were found this year. Well-known Belgians have also participated in the competition in the past. Alex Agnew won the competition in 2003 and Wim Hilsen was a finalist in 2002.
The organization that made the decision, “a knot in our stomach and pain in our hearts,” published a statement about the decision on the festival’s website. The Leids Cabaret Festival seeks to support young cabaret artists / comedians who are ready for the next step in existence as an independent stage maker and to give them the last push where possible.
These candidates were not found this year. “We don’t want to blame Corona for everything,” says the organization. “The zeitgeist is also changing. That’s why we’ll look at the function of the Leids Cabaret Festival at this time and how we see our role in it. Cabaret in all its forms, directorial talent, loading stray types onto our wagon; that’s where our inspiration lies.”
Leiden Cabaret is one of the most important launching pads for young cabaret talent. The event was first staged in 1978. Since then, the Leids Cabaret Festival has produced many top comedians, including Naguib Amhaly, Pauline Cornelis, Alex Agnew and Wim Hilsen. The competition was canceled in 2021 due to the Corona lockdown.
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