In what has been dubbed “London’s answer to the Edinburgh Fringe” The Vaults in London are bringing an action packed six weeks to Waterloo. Deep underground hundreds of brand new shows will be previewing across the next month. Some will be weird, some will be extraordinary, all will be fun.  Last year saw record audience numbers and this year has seen record production applications and so in 2018 there are some new venues expanding around the Waterloo area as well as the infamous labyrinth underground tunnels. Even if you aren’t planning to catch a show there are bars aplenty to soak up that festival atmosphere. There is so much going on at this years Vault Festival how could you possibly decide? Do not fear however as we have compiled our essential shows. Below are the top picks that we think are not to be missed.


Great Again the Musical

Theatre. An entertaining new musical about friendship, adventure and voting for Donald Trump

£14.50. The Vaults, from 24 – 28 Jan at 18:00


Theatre. This experience brings together gaming and interactive theatre, casting the audience as the protagonists of change in a city in turmoil

£19.50. Unit 9 from 24 Jan – 18 March at 18:30


Theatre.  Peter Pan-inspired new, immersive musical

£26.50. The Vaults, from 24 Jan – 18 March at 19:00

Fuck You Pay Me 

Theatre. Debut from bitingly observant solo artist Joana Nastari is an explosion of dramatic

expectations and shitty preconceptions, dismantling what a play about strippers should be

£11.50. Unit 9, from 24 Jan – 18 March at 21:15


Theatre. A funny, moving and honest story about mixed heritage and immigration

£11.50, The Vaults, 28 Jan at 14:45


Theatre. This gripping piece of site-specific theatre will invite the audience into Sam’s stolen car, joining her only seconds after she has crashed it. (Only for 6 at a time)

£15.50, The Vaults, from 24 Jan – 18 March at 18:30 & 19:30


Theatre. Alex Benjamin’s new play ‘Cotton,’ a dizzying, manic trip into the world of professional gaming

£9.50, Waterloo East Theatre, from 14 – 18 Feb at  18:05

Tom and Bunny Save the World

Theatre. The zombie comedy musical, with a live folk soundtrack

£11.50. The Vaults from 14 – 18 March at 20:25

Police Cops in Space

Comedy. A low-fi sci-fi set in the most dangerous place on Earth…Space

£14.50. The Vaults from 24 Jan – 4 Feb at 21:15

James Acaster: Work in Progress

Comedy. Super cool dude James Acaster knocks about some ideas that he’d really like to end up being funny

£9.50. Waterloo East 4 Feb at 21:30

The Poetry we Make

Theatre. Love, loss, Dolly Parton and understanding love beyond gender

£14.50. The Vaults from 7 – 11 Feb at 18:00

The Guilty Feminist Podcast

Comedy.The hit comedy podcast records a rand new episode

£11.50. The Vaults, 8 Feb at 18:10

Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho

Theatre. The smash hit drag extravaganza

£16.50. The Vaults from 14 – 25 Feb at 20:20

Christopher Bliss’s Literary Salon 

Comedy. What happens when an over-analytical literature graduate inconceivably champions the 2-page novels of a charming misfit from Shropshire?

£9.50. The Vaults from 14 – 16 Feb at 22:00

Father of Lies 

Theatre. The chilling true story behind a mysterious, unsolved murder in West Germany, 1973. It is a horror show about belief, grief, ghosts and betrayal

£9.50. The Vaults from 28 Feb – 4 March at 19:30

Our culturised unmissable performance: Shotgun Carousel

Shotgun Carousel are a a multi-disciplinary performance collective and you can expect to see the unexpected. They create large-scale performance installations that transform spaces and your imaginations. 

Fat Tuesday: After its success last year their Mardi-Gras extravaganza returns underground in what will be one of the most visually stunning and lively evenings of the festival as you immerse yourself in the midst of the carnival. This is circus and cabaret on a level you will not have experienced before. 23-24 Feb

Bleeding Heart Ball:  This time Shotgun Carousel are teaming up with Gypsy Disco for London’s alternative Valentines event. Already promising “gender-bending cabaret, awe-inspiring interactive theatre performances and jaw-dropping circus acts” this is one night at The Vaults you will not want to miss. 17 Feb             

Find out more about the incredible Shotgun Carousel here


The festival runs 5 days a week, and is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. The Opening times are listed below and it is definitely worth checking out their bars even if you don’t have a ticket. There are separate “Lates” which are ticketed from 10pm on Fridays and Saturdays if you are looking for that Fringe Festival atmosphere on a night out. Tickets to all events can be bought online and through the venue box office. Some events are totally free so be sure to swing by over the weekends.

Weds 17:45 – 01:00
Thurs 17:45 – 01:00
Fri 17:45 – 03:00*
Sat 12:45 – 03:00*
Sun 12:45 – 23:00