Vault Festival new theatre preview week five: 25 February to 1 March 2020

As we hit the halfway point at London’s Vault Festival, Mark Ludmon previews some of the new theatre writing opening in week five, from 25 February to 1 March 2020.

Vault Festival preview Week %

Ruth Connick and Laura Schuller’s new work Alex, Play has been inspired by sisters Christine and Lea Papin who committed a notorious murder in 1933. Reimagining it in the modern day with home technology, it boldly promises to “leave you questioning your own existence”. Vault Festival at The Vaults: 25 February to 1 March.

My Mother Runs In Zig Zags Vault Festival 2020

With humour and an original live music score, Coriander Theatre’s new play My Mother Runs In Zig Zags is about a mother who lived through the Lebanese civil war and her queer daughter who has grown up in the West. The Vaults: 25 February to 1 March.

Father’s Son is the first full-length play from young working-class writer James Morton and was developed through the National Theatre’s Toolkit programme and Soho Writers’ Lab. Spanning three generations, it examines how unresolved trauma, toxic behaviours and poor mental health ripple through a working-class family in Stoke-on-Trent. The Vaults: 25 to 28 February.

Blow Vault Festival 2020

Blow: A Deaf Girl’s Fight challenges how we treat d/Deaf and disabled people on stage, screen, and in real life, written by Deaf actor and dancer Libby Welsh with Jack Silver, artistic director of theatre company Tramp. Set in a tough 1980s boxing gym, it is part immersive show, part musical and part play. It was a finalist in Pleasance Theatre’s Charlie Hartill Award scheme. The Vaults: 25 February to 1 March.

Life and Death Of A Journalist

Hong Kong playwright Jingan Young tackles censorship and the role of the media in China in her latest play, Life and Death of a Journalist. Directed by Max Lindsay, it follows a London newspaper journalist, played by Lucy Roslyn, who must deal with increasing pressure from a Chinese investor to twist coverage of the Hong Kong protests. The Vaults: 25 February to 1 March.

Orange In The Subway

Orange in the Subway by Welsh playwright Owen Thomas explores the experience of being homeless, performed by Mica Williams, George Whitehead and Jane Paul-Gets. It comes from new theatre company Orange-You-Glad & Burt Dingles Unconscious Productions, brought together by Cardiff theatre The Other Room. The Vaults: 25 February to 1 March.

This Queer House

This Queer House is the debut play from poet Oakley Flanagan about a young queer couple facing up to the past when they set out to renovate a house they have inherited. Developed in collaboration with OPIA Collective, it is an exploration of home-making, the seduction of normalcy and the cost our dreams can come at. Network Theatre: 27 February to 1 March.


Alice is a new play written and performed by Emily Renée, described as the first production in the UK to explore Azerbaijani-British identity. With direction and dramaturgy from Tamar Saphra, this solo play questions the power of creating our own personal myths to define who we are. It is produced by collective Klein Blue. The Vaults: 27 February to 1 March.

Brain Of Britain Vault Festival

Building on the success of his previous hits Rotterdam and Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho, playwright Jon Brittain presents a scratch night of rehearsed readings of his own new works in progress as well as snippets from the past. “Egotistically” driven, it is called Brain of Brittain. The Vaults: 28 February and 21 March.

Su8blet next to heaven

Written and performed by Madeleine Accalia, The Sublet Next to Heaven follows Lara and John (and their dogs) whose lives change forever when they meet in a Brighton park. Directed by Phoebe Wood, it is described by theatre company Laughing Mirror as “a funny, tender and surreal exploration of women’s bodies, public spaces and devils in paradise”. The Vaults: 29 February to 1 March.

Wilde Tales

Wild(e) Tales is based on the fairytales of Oscar Wilde told through the Irish tradition of oral storytelling and shadow puppetry. Exploring how stories change over a time, it sees storytellers The Shadow Gals pitted against Wilde himself, played by non-binary drag artist Crystal Bollix. It is aimed at “mature children and childish adults”. The Vaults: 1 to 8 March.

Vault Preview 1

Vault Preview 2

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