Though born and raised in the Hutt City suburb of Petone, Jan Maree proudly identifies as a Hamiltonian, the city she has called home since 2003.
One of New Zealand's most successful female comedians, Jan began her career as a poet. Moving from spoken word to stand-up in 1994, Jan broke the big time as a new face on television’s Pulp Comedy in 1997, moving swiftly on to win the Billy T award in 2001. In 2011 she won the Fred Award, becoming the first, and to-date the only, female comedian to receive the NZ International Comedy Festival's supreme award.
She is something of an icon at Hamilton East watering hole The Cook, hosting a monthly comedy showcase for a whopping ten and a half years. The landmark comedy night continues to this day, and is the longest running pub comedy gig in New Zealand.
After 21 years spent harvesting LOLs Jan Maree hung up her microphone in 2015, trading the spotlight to pursue new dreams; working on the land at her and partner Bruce’s Rāhui Farm on the west side of the Waikato.
Being retired doesn't mean she isn't gigging – for a good cause or good money, she will – though she is adamant she is no longer available for children's parties.
2011 Fred Award - NZ International Comedy Festival
2001 Billy T Comedy Award - NZ International Comedy Festival