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“With all the moxie of an RSL barmaid and the library card of a research fellow, Nelly Thomas has emerged to talk about nothing slighter than the trials of her generation. She’s erudite, earthy and entirely unemployable.” Helen Razer, The Age Newspaper (Review as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival)
Nelly Thomas performed around Australia and the world doing stand-up comedy for over sixteen years. She has now traded the big stage for the “quiet life” of an author, professional MC and key-note presenter.
Nelly also moonlights on ABC radio Melbourne, filling in for Lindy Burns on Evenings, and is often a guest on ABC Local Radio and Radio National.
You’ll regularly find her musings in the Australian press.
Nelly was listed as one of Australia’s “most innovative thinkers” in The Age Newspaper’s, The Zone and was featured on the ABC’s Big Ideas: The Smartest Stuff on TV, Radio and Online.
She is highly sought after as a professional MC. Her trademark is a combination of intelligence and warmth and, her ability to keep an event buoyant while also running smoothly and to time.
Nelly’s passion is health and wellbeing - physical, social, emotional and community health.
Since 2016 she has been an Ambassador for Jean Hailes for Women’s Health – Australia’s largest women’s health organisation – and she is a well-known health promotion speaker; often being asked to speak on women’s and children’s health, family violence, gender equity and a range of other health issues. Her work on mental health is also in high demand.
Nelly grew up in the WA Wheatbelt and her story as a kid from the middle of no-where – the first in her family to go to university – all the way to the Australian stage, screen and airwaves, is fascinating and illuminating.
She brings her unique life experiences, good humour, keen insight and a healthy dose of down-to-earth reality to all her work.
Nelly now lives in Melbourne with her partner Lachlan, their two daughters, a grumpy poodle and a dense Labradoodle.
Books by Nelly: Some Boys (2018), Some Girls (2017), What Women Want (2014)
Winner: National Raw Comedy Competition 2003
Directed Barry Award Winning US comedian Maria Bamford
Directed Best Newcomer Stella Young in her award-winning debut solo show
Performed at Soho Theatre in London in 2015 to honour the late, grate Stella Young
2 seasons at the Edinburgh Fringe
15 seasons at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Being listed as one of Australia’s “most innovative thinkers” in The Age Newspaper’s, The Zone
Being honoured as the Jean Hailes for Women's Health Official Ambassador in 2016
Melbourne International Comedy Festival
2017 Director, LOL Squad Live, Melbourne Arts Centre
2016 Director, Class Clowns National Grand Final, Melbourne Town Hall
2015 Director, Class Clowns National Grand Final, Melbourne Town Hall
2015 Group Show, Political Asylum, Melbourne Town Hall
2014 Solo Show (written and performed by Nelly Thomas), Pleasantly Furious, Northcote Town Hall
2014 Group Show, Political Asylum, Melbourne Town Hall
2014 Director, Tales from the Crip, Stella Young, Northcote Town Hall (Winner: Best Newcomer Award)
2012 Director, Who’s That Chic? Written and Performed by Candy B & Busty Beats, Directed by Nelly Thomas.
2012, Glorious Baaaastards, written by the performers and writers from Ilbijerri Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Company with Nelly Thomas, Directed by Rachel Maza-Long.
2011, A Black Sheep Walked into a Baaaa, written by the performers and writers from Ilbijerri Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Company with Nelly Thomas, Directed by Rachel Maza-Long.
2011 Everything Must Go, Written and Performed by Rachel Leary, Directed by Damian Callinan, Assistant Director - Nelly Thomas.
2011 Group Show, Political Asylum, Melbourne Town Hall
2010 Solo Show (written and performed by Nelly Thomas), I Coulda Been a Sailor, Melbourne Town Hall, Directed by Justin Hamilton
2010 Group Show, Political Asylum, Melbourne Town Hall
2009 Mother of the Year, Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Starring Nelly Thomas, Catherine Deveny & Christine Basil
2009 Group Show, Political Asylum, Melbourne Town Hall
2008, Solo Show (written and performed by Nelly Thomas), Nelly Thomas is not a Yummy Mummy, Trades Hall Melbourne
2007 Director, The Comedy Zone, Starring Josh Makinda, Jack Druce, Lila Tilman and Jacques Barrett, Directed by Nelly Thomas.
2006, Solo Show (written and performed by Nelly Thomas), Family Ties, (nominated for the Golden Gibbo Award), Directed by Andrea Powell.
2005 Director, PLan B, written and performed by Maria Bamford, Directed by Nelly Thomas.
2004 Group Show, Comedy Zone, Melbourne Town Hall, Starring Cal Wilson, Nelly Thomas, Steve Sheean, Marcus Ryan and Sammy J.
2003 Group Show, Hair Supply, Starring Nelly Thomas, Carolyn Chillura and Mandy Hampson
2002 Winner, local heat, Victorian State Final and National Grandfinal, Raw Comedy, Melbourne Town Hall
Edinburgh Fringe Festival
2004 Group Show, Raw Prawns, Gilded Balloon, Starring Nelly Thomas, Steve Sheehan, Josh Makinda and Marcus Ryan
2006 Solo Show, Family Ties, Gilded Balloon, Written and performed by Nelly Thomas.
Melbourne Fringe Festival
2004, Betty Blues: A Comedy Show about Depression, Written by Nelly Thomas and featuring Toby Sullivan, Jill Peakock, Sam Simmons & Natalie Michelle Smith.
Columnist, New Matilda, 2016 - present.
Regular guest and co-host on ABC Radio 774 Melbourne and Victoria, 2007 – present.
Regular guest on Radio National Australia segment What I Learned from the News This Week, 2014 – 2016.
Regular appearances on The Comedy Channel and special appearances on ABC, SBS, Channel 31 and Channel 10 TV, 2003 – present. Featured in Judith Lucy's ABC TV Show "All Woman".
Former Co-host and now special regular guest of “BoxCutters” television podcast.
Regular guest columnist in a variety of magazines and newspapers.
Book: What Women Want, by Nelly Thomas, Random House in 2012.
Book: Yours Truly: Women of Letters, Curated by Marieke Hardy and Michaela Maguire, with contributions by Annabelle Crabbe, Eva Cox, Megan Washington, Amanda Palmer, Nelly Thomas and many more, Penguin, 2013.
The Talk DVD, a sexual health and ethics DVD for teens and their parents, released with Hopscotch Films and Dirty Work Comedy in 2011
Nelly has done hundreds of gigs over the years in festivals, comedy clubs and at private and corporate events. Highlights include performing at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival Club, touring Australia on Roadshow and performing as part of UpFront and Birds on the Bill.
Corporate clients include: The Royal Women’s Hospital, the Gawler Foundation, Positive Women, Amnesty International, Nandos, CRANA, Department of Human Services, Women’s Health West, Women’s Health in the North, Westfield Shopping Centres, PANDA, CASA, Office for the Status of Women, The Child Safety Commissioner and many more.
The Talk Live, A comedy show for parents and carers about how to talk to teens about sex and healthy relationships. Based on Nelly's groundbreaking DVD of the same name.
The No Means No Show, A comedy show for teens about safe and respectful sex and relationships. Developed with an advisory committee with representatives from the Centre Against Sexual Assault, No to Violence and the Royal Women's Hospital.
Condom Dialogues, A comedy show for teens about safe sex. Developed with the Royal Women's Hospital.
Being a Woman is Good for Your Health, A comedy show for adult women about physical and mental health.
Mentally Funny, A comedy show about mental health, resilience and staying well.
No Smokes, No Joke, A comedy show for Indigenous Australians about quitting smoking. Developed with the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service and starring Kevin Kropinyeri, Dawn & Denise McGuinness and Jason Tamiru.
AWARDS AND ACHIEVEMENTS
Being listed as one of Australia’s “most innovative thinkers” in The Age Newspaper’s, The Zone in 2011.
Writing her first book, What Women Want, Random House, 2012.
Making The Talk DVD - a sexual health and ethics DVD for teens and their parents, released with Hopscotch Films and Dirty Work Comedy in 2011
Squeezing out two human babies
Being awarded a federal grant to expand the No Means No Show
Winner, National Grandfinal: Raw Comedy (2003)
Nominee, The Golden Gibbo Award for innovative comedy
Volunteer Mentor - ASISTA Mentoring and Friendship Program for Young Women “at risk”