Francesca is an award-winning wobbly* comedian, actress and writer.
She has toured internationally with sell-out runs around the world including the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and the prestigious Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal. She has also performed in Ireland, South Africa, Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, and America. A regular face on TV, Francesca is well-known for starring in five series of BBC's 'Grange Hill' and in 'Extras' opposite Ricky Gervais and Kate Winslet. In Dec 2012, she made a storming appearance on BBC3's Russell Howard’s Good News.
Currently, Francesca is in the middle of a 55-date UK/Ireland tour of her award-winning show, 'WHAT THE **** IS NORMAL?!' (see here for dates), is developing her own sitcom project, writing her first book and working on several documentary ideas.
Despite rarely surfacing before noon, she continues to deliver motivational and after-dinner speeches across the globe and, in 2005, she was nominated for the 'Motivator Of The Year' Award along with Sir Bob Geldof. She also gives speeches to medical professionals, and runs comedy workshops for mixed ability performers and writers in the UK and overseas.
Not one to shy away from the important issues, in 2008, Francesca made global headlines when she became the first Olympic Torch-Bearer to pull out of the London relay in protest against China’s treatment of Tibet. In January 2012, she took on Michael Portillo over the government’s welfare reforms live on BBC1’s 'This Week'. Her appearance sparked huge public interest and the programme received more feedback than any previous show. She followed this up with a much-talked about appearance on BBC2's Newsnight where she once again argued with a Tory. In September, she was voted most popular guest on BBC3's Free Speech, and debated the legacy of the Paralympics with Jon Snow live on Channel 4 News. She is also rapidly becoming a regular guest on radio 4’s hugely popular The News Quiz alongside Jeremy Hardy. Last but not least, Francesca helped produce the award-winning documentary, 'The Lottery Of Birth', which is directed and written by her brother, Raoul Martinez. The film explores freedom and control in the Western World and features interviews with Howard Zinn, Tony Benn, Noam Chomsky, George Monbiot and many others. The trailer can be viewed here.
*Oh, she has cerebral palsy but thinks "wobbly" is a lot cooler.