This year's Sydney Comedy Festival kicks off today and will feature more than 210 shows from a range of much-loved comedians and freshly unearthed talent.

Making appearances will be Australian comedy icons Kitty Flanagan (The Project and The Weekly with Charlie Pickering), Matt Okine (former Triple J presenter), Aunty Donna, Ross Noble and Becky Lucas. International comics include Urzila Carlson (RSA/NZ), David O'Doherty (IRE), Jason Byrne (IRE) Daniel Sloss (SCO), UK stars such as Ross Noble, Stephen K Amos, Jonathan Pie, Paul Chowdhry and Jamali Maddix; as well as US performers Michael Che, Shawn Wayans, Tom Segura and Ari Shaffir – to name a few.

As usual, the festival gala will kick things off over three big nights and four venues, with a line-up of performers revealed on the night. There are still tickets available at the Sydney Opera House (24 April), and at Parramatta's Riverside Theatre (24 April).

A festival bonus providing more than just laughs will be the Frocking Hilarious event on 12 May. Held at Sydney Town Hall and presented by ActionAid Australia, an all-female line-up will perform in support of women’s rights across the globe.

There will also be a next “big things” portion of the festival showcasing fresh talent from the Sydney comedy scene. These are a must-see with bargain-priced tickets starting at $15.

A fun-filled children's program is promised at The Factory on opening weekend, too, with diverse performers from Mr Snot Bottom to Nikki Britton as Grandma to Debbie Zukerman and Alicia Gonzalez with You’ll Never Guess Where I Hid the Cheese. There’ll also be a headline performance from Kid/Dub, the masterminds behind the popular adult dance parties Hot Dub Time Machine.

Sydney Comedy Festival director Jorge Menidis described the program as a "comedy behemoth”.

“Following the 2017 fest, we set a brief that was simply to make it bigger, funnier and unmissable, and that is exactly what I believe this year’s festival delivers.”

Sydney Comedy Festival runs Monday April 23 to May 20; see the full line-up here.

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