Attitude Comedy Award: Julian Clary

For three decades, Julian Clary has gone from provocative prodigy to national treasure — but he has always minced to the beat of his own drum.


Julian Clary has been honoured with the Comedy Award at the Virgin Holidays Attitude Awards 2018, powered by Jaguar.

For 30 years now, Clary has glittered at the heart of the British comedy scene as an unapologetically camp tour de force.

The Lord of the Mince and the king of innuendo first made a name for himself on the alternative comedy/cabaret scene of the early 1980s, under pseudonyms including Gillian Pieface and The Joan Collins Fanclub.

Inspired by the likes of David Bowie and dancer/choreographer Lindsay Kemp, Julian’s glam make-up and tight, skimpy PVC outfits made him a provocative choice for mainstream TV channels, but he was lapped up by audiences who delighted in his scandalous and offensive humour.

These days, as Julian approaches his 60th birthday next spring, the urge to offend isn’t as strong.

"If I’m going to do a gig in Harrogate or Chatham, then there’d probably be some people who are going to be offended,” he says in Attitude's November Awards issue.

"Good for them. But no, three decades on we have all evolved, and it’s more about the joy of making people laugh.

"That’s where I get my kicks now, and I always did, really; the outrage was just a thing that happened along the way. A bit like crystal meth."

Read more about the winners from the Virgin Holidays Attitude Awards 2018, powered by Jaguar in the November Awards issue of Attitude, out now.

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