The Edinburgh Fringe has been the springboard for some of the U.K’s biggest stars. It’s a hustling, bustling supermarket-on-a-Saturday of a place, teeming with talent and bursting with show-offs. You have to be one to be seen in August at the Fringe.

Sean WalshThis is a big Fringe for Walsh

At the end of the hectic month, a collection of awards are handed out to the cream of the crop, including nods for seasoned professionals and burgeoning talents alike. This propels said star into new realms of popularity, not least because next year’s flyer can boast extra awards.

Stand up has made a comeback in a big way this year, with plenty of new talents tricking audiences into laughter. The 33rd Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Awards contains seven names, with the winner sure to go on to bigger and better things; some of them are already pretty big.

The shortlist:
1. Bridget Christie – ‘A Bic for Her’
2. Carl Donnelly - ‘Now That’s What I Carl Donnelly! Volume V’
3. James Acaster – ‘Lawnmower’
4. Max and Ivan - ‘The Reunion’
5. Mike Wozniak – Take The Hit
6. Nick Helm - ‘One Man Mega Myth’
7. Seann Walsh: ‘The Lie-in King’

Familiar face Sean Walsh will be in with a good chance; the funny-man already has his own show on Comedy Central amongst others. Having missed out in 2011, Nick Helm disappointed in 2012, but he’s back with vengeance this year and makes a strong case for himself. Nominated for best newcomer at the Fringe in 2009, Carl Donnelly makes this a really tight group.

Marcus BrigstockMarcus Brigstock is a festival favourite

One award has already been handed out: that of best joke. Former paintbrush salesman Rob Auton quit his monotonous job and went for a career in comedy, and his best joke nod should help out. The gag: “I heard a rumour that Cadbury is bringing out an oriental chocolate bar. Could be a Chinese Wispa.” (BBC)

The comedian said he was “just pleased that a joke that tackles the serious issue of the invention of a new chocolate bar can be laughed at by the people of Britain”. The second most popular line was spoken by Alex Horne: “I used to work in a shoe-recycling shop. It was sole-destroying.”