Local comedians James Nokise and Kura Forrester have won big at this year's NZ International Comedy Festival.

Forrester was the recipient of the prestigious Billy T Award, which recognises rising talent in comedy, while Nokise took home the Fred Award, which is bestowed upon the best New Zealand show in the festival.

The gongs were handed out at the Electric Kiwi Last Laughs show on Sunday night, which featured performances from all nominees.

Up against Nokise for the Fred Award were Barnie Duncan and James Roque, while Forrester's fellow nominees were Donna Brookbanks, James Mustapic, Ray Shipley and Tom Sainsbury.

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Named after New Zealand comedy legend Billy T James, the Billy T Award - presented in the form of a yellow towel - earns Forrester a $3000 cash grant from the Comedy Festival and a range of prizes.

Forrester won for her show Kura Shoulda Woulda, which earned five stars from the New Zealand Herald; critic Ethan Sills praised Forrester as a "dazzling, engaging comedian delivering something simple but deeply, hilariously effective".

The Fred Award, named after comedian John Clarke's beloved character Fred Dagg, earns Nokise a cash grant of $2000 as well as a prize pack.

Other winners on the night were Demi Lardner, who won Best International Show; Liv McKenzie, who won Best Newcomer (Auckland); and Alice May Connolly & Maria Williams, who won Best Newcomer (Wellington).

From left: Australian Demi Lardner; Liv McKenzie; and Alice May Connolly & Maria Williams. Photos / supplied
From left: Australian Demi Lardner; Liv McKenzie; and Alice May Connolly & Maria Williams. Photos / supplied

Meanwhile, this year's joint winners of the RAW Comedy Quest, a competition for new comedians, were Courtney Dawson and Sarah Hughes.