A Pinch of Vault Week One: Picks of the Week

A Pinch of Vault. Photo: courtesy of VAULT Festival

VAULT’s festival of live work-in-progress shows, A Pinch of VAULT, returns for a third year showcasing new works from leading independent performance makers taking place at The Glitch and venues across Waterloo and Bankside from 12th February – 10th March.

We take a look at some of the highlights of week one:

A Pinch of Vault – Week One Highlights

The Good Iranian

Written and performed by Arsalan Akhavan, The Good Iranian is a 60-minute solo performance that interweaves a boldly original and funny reimagining of myths from the Persian Book of Kings (the Shahnameh), with true personal stories about identity, family, and culture from life as a Theatre kid coming of age in the American South.

The unique show offers an inventive take on the Shahnameh stories is accessible to all audiences, especially non-Iranians, and seeks to empower everyone to overcome darkness with light and hope.

Playing at Sino Thai on 20 and 21 February

Cancer B*tch!

Written by Hannah Ali Khan, based on her own experiences of being diagnosed with thyroid cancer a year ago, Cancer B*tch! is an open, honest, and funny perspective on what it can be like to have cancer in your twenties.

The rehearsed reading is performed by Assa Kanouté, with direction from Lydia McKinley, a director, dramaturg, and literary assistant at the Finborough Theatre.

Plays The Spacement at The Glitch on 17 February

Do You Fancy Them, or Are They Just in the Vicinity?

This one-of-a-kind (completely ripped off from blind date) style gameshow describes itself as “a very silly play, hoping for a very silly audience who are willing to wear funny hats.” Do You Fancy Them, or Are They Just in the Vicinity? is written and performed by Sarah Teale with direction from Evie Ayres-Townshend.

Teale has been shortlisted for the Lancaster Playwriting Prize and she was a winner of the Royal Exchange Theatre’s Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting LocalTale award. Her new play promises to be an interesting look at love.

Plays The Spacement at The Glitch on 17 and 18 February


Tegan Verheul’s topical new play Surrogates sees an imagined future where AI replicas of humans are so convincing they are indistinguishable from us. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, the London-based actor, comedian, and playwright’s play is presented by the collective of women and femmes Verheul co-founded, The WWWC.

Verheul described being “terrified about the types of AI already available and already in use – a lot of the dystopian elements in the play are not potential or theoretical, they’re products and processes already in use.” Scary.

Read our interview with Verheul here: Tegan Verheul on Surrogates

Plays The Spacement at The Glitch on 13 and 14 February

This Is My Body

Camino de Santiago has proved the inspiration for numerous writers over the years, but Abby Ferree’s new work This Is My Body provides a new angle to The Way.

Over 500 miles, a queer, neurodivergent, fat, female-presenting person with religious trauma has plenty of time to move and think and reconcile their religious past with the queer present. The play combines physical theatre, poetry and a few surprises.

Plays Sino Thai on 16 and 17 February


Witchunt is a timely exploration Spain’s feminist revolution, witch trials, and mystic folklore told through the examination of two events: Spanish Football Association president Luis Rubiales’s unconsential kiss of a female player and ‘Jo També’, Catalonia’s own iteration of the ‘Me Too’ movement.

The production is presented by Mad, Who?, an emerging, multicultural theatre company that creates work focusing on human rights issues from a feminist lens.

Plays The Spacement at The Glitch on 15 February

Be water, my friend – a dark comedic one-woman show

Chenxing Liu, tge a dynamic performer and artist, brings Be water, my friend – a dark comedic one-woman show to the festival, combining mime and dark comedy blend to tell the story of a Chinese international student’s daring journey in the UK’s acting world.

Drawing inspiration from Bruce Lee’s “Be water, my friend,” this narrative is a rollercoaster of emotions, humour, and stark realities.

Plays The Spacement at The Glitch on 13 and 14 February.

A Pinch of Vault runs until 10 March across Waterloo and Bankside, London.

For full listings visit the festival website.