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Vault Festival in London: what to see

Hunt out some of London's most exciting new theatre and comedy shows during 2018 at this subterranean festival

Vault Festival will be back in London in 2018 with another brilliantly eclectic programme of performance, lasting from January until March. Below is our guide to the fest's best theatre, comedy, and events.

For more theatre recommendations, read our critics' choice for the best of London theatre. 

What is Vault Festival 2018?
An eight-week event showcasing some of London's most exciting new theatre, cabaret and comedy.

When is Vault Festival 2018?
From 24th January until 18th March. 

Where is Vault Festival?
Surprisingly enough, in a vault. Well, kind of... The action takes place in The Vaults Theatre, a sprawling, crypt-like space underneath Waterloo Station, with a couple of extra shows in nearby Network Theatre and Morley College.

How much does Vault Festival cost?
Prices for individual events vary.

Keep checking back on this page nearer the time, as we'll be updating it with Vault Festival info and show details as they're announced.

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By: Andrzej Lukowski


Josie Tastemaker

I went to see Mahdi the Magician as part of the Vaults Festival at Waterloo.  I had never been to the Vaults before so they were quite hard to find but the search is certainly worth it.  Inside is many hidden areas, theatres and bars that I never thought were hidden so close to Waterloo.  I will certainly be going back to see more shows here. 

Mahdi himself was completely new to me but I was pleasantly surprised to see he was a great magician with some great tricks.  Some I have seen before but some were new.  He started strong on a very intense opening but it slowly moved into a more conversational show and I could tell he was rather nervous throughout the set.  Some parts of his jokes and conversation were rather awkward and I could sense people were uncomfortable but once he got into the magic that is where he excelled.  I do think I got lucky to see the start of a great magician and with some work I do believe his show will be truly amazing. 

Summerlondon tastemaker

I went to see Mahdi the Magician as part of the Vaults Festival. I loved the quirky and unique venue which is super close to Waterloo station. 

I'd seen clips of Mahdi fooling Penn and Teller, so I was expecting big things from his show. While there were some really clever card tricks, I did feel like there was a big, more magical trick missing, although I do think there may have been more to come in the show - unfortunately, Mahdi ran out of time (an hour was maybe not long enough for his full set?) 

Mahdi did get a few big laughs through his set, but I think some of the humour was a little awkward at points and did make the show feel like it was dragging. 

Overall, I loved the venue and would definitely visit again to see something else. Mahdi was clever with his card tricks, but needed to work on his timing a little (both comedic and to fit his set into the timeslot!)

mangolisa tastemaker

If you missed it this year, be ready for The Vaults 2018. It's vibrant and packed with progressive, experimental, vibrant programmes that changes your life and the way you look at things.

The festival is also a great way to let loose, let rip and party. The opening and closing parties are fantastic. It's a great spot and events to meet fellow Londoners who are into arts, great music and great theatre. The closing party was packed with dapper, stylish and arty part animals and the vibe was fantastic!

I wish I could attend more shows and I am looking forward to 2018!