by Sophia Sleigh
Great Comedy Nights' Golden Jester competition was held at the Holiday Inn, on Wednesday, December 7.
The audience voted for the wittiest stand-up and an X-Factor style panel of judges, including representatives from the Sutton Guardian and hotel manager Marco Firk, 52, decided the overall winner.
The show was the culmination of several months' worth of auditions and was orgainsed by Alan Sellers, 53, from Epsom.
Mr Sellers doubled up as the compere for the night, and joked that out of the 200 comedians who auditioned, they had gone through "the good, the bad, and the ugly" to get to the final five acts.
Steve Scaffardi, 33, frfom Carshalton, came runner-up in the competition, along Chris Blackmore, 17, from Raynes Park.
Mr Scaffardi was the most contemporary comedian, making tongue-in-cheek jokes about the racist tram lady from Croydon and this summer's riots.
He provided cringe-worthy sketches, which made the men in the audience nod their heads in acknowledgment and their girlfriends laugh in embarrassment.
Just after his performance, Mr Scaffardi said: "It's been good fun - stand-up is always something I thought about doing and you get such a good buzz when you do it.
"I take a lot from my experiences and try to find things people can relate to.
"You know by the crowd's reaction how you are doing and tonight's my 50th gig."
The well-deserved winner of the overall competition was Iranian comedian Vahid Jananguard, 58, from Oxford, who had the audience members crying with laughter and was a hit with the judges.
Mr Sellers said: "It was really excellent, it was the first year of the competition and we were using this year as a gauge. We already have 400 comedians entering next year.
"Comedians have heard it was a fair competition and it shows by the fact Vahid won and didn't bring a large audience to support him."
For further information on the Golden Jester competition 2012, visit greatcomedynights.co.uk