Ali Sultan wins Best of the Midwest comedy competition at Gilda’s LaughFest 2018

Five years after winning the Funniest Person in the Twin Cities contest, Ali Sultan has leveled up, taking home the title of Best of the Midwest in the 2018 Gilda’s LaughFest competition.

Sultan beat out seven other up-and-coming stand-ups from the region for the title and the $2,500 prize Thursday during the annual festival in Grand Rapids, Mich.


The other finalists were Geoffrey Asmus, Reena Calm, Mickey Housley, Joe Kilgallon, Holly Lynnea, Mary Santora  and Brent Terhune.

Sultan moved with his family from Yemen at age 15, and in his first year of stand-up in Minnesota, also managed to win the comedy contests at both Acme Comedy Co. and House of Comedy. He was recently featured on Comedy Central in Kevin Hart’s Hart of the City showcases.


Above: Joanne Roehm, director of strategic initiatives and Gilda’s LaughFest, presents Ali Sultan with the 2018 Gilda’s LaughFest Best of the Midwest Comedian Award.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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