The 10th-anniversary festival may not be going ahead, but that doesn’t mean no more VAULT Festival. VAULT Creative Studios is VAULT Festival’s brand-new programme of opportunities for artists and freelancers affected by the cancellation of 2022’s Festival. Across four weeks, VAULT will offer free development space, workshops, artist opportunities, and network-building to provide support and fuel creativity.
VAULT Space will offer all VAULT Festival 2022 artists free space to use as they wish, whether for rehearsals, meetings, workshops, content creation, or even show-sharings. The hope is these spaces will allow the opportunity to create, develop and even record shows with artistic and producing support from the VAULT Festival team.
VAULT Workshops will offer extensive online and in-person sessions covering creative development, practical up-skilling, and wellbeing support – allowing artists and freelancers to discover new skills and elevate existing ones. Workshops include a Boundless Theatre takeover, a talk and Q&A with BBC script editor Josh Treacy, and a BSL + Deaf awareness Training workshop. Also announced is an online discussion with Lyn Gardner and VAULT Festival’s Head of Programming, Bec Martin, on the challenges facing early-career artists and what the future of theatre might look like.
The ethos of VAULT Festival is about giving new, early and mid-career artists access to the industry and each other – something crucial to all of those forging a career in the arts. VAULT Creative Studios will provide space for this via VAULT Connect – network-building opportunities for artists to come together through sessions with both peers and industry figures. Expect industry speed dating-style events, a Wellbeing Week, and stimulating panel discussions.
New initiatives will also keep the Festival’s sense of creativity and fun at the heart of the new development programme. For those who want to know what it takes to be a drag artist, stand-up comic, or cabaret act, VAULT Masterclasses will be open to both members of the public as well as artists and staff – allowing participants to learn directly from leading practitioners in our unique series of practical, fun workshops. And VAULT Creative Studios will also provide creative opportunities for early-career comedians, to hone their skills, connect to other comedians, along with connecting unrepresented comedians to agents and producers.
VAULT Creative Studios will also seek to support the freelancers who have been affected by VAULT Festival’s cancellation. A bespoke series of opportunities and support will be offered to freelance staff, enabling them to gain new skills, qualifications, and experiences. These include practical workshops in box office, tech, producing, and arts management, courses in first aid, conflict resolution, and accessibility training, and sessions in the skills of live performance, such as writing, performing, and directing.
The Festival was set to celebrate its 10th anniversary and this cannot go unmarked – VAULT X will bring together some of the biggest names to come out of VAULT in the last ten years. They will present original material created especially to mark the anniversary. Released every week on the VAULT website, this free content celebrates ten years of independent performance making from leading artists.
VAULT has also created a web page that lists all the VAULT Festival 2022 show transfers. As well as promoting shows that have secured a life elsewhere, this resource will also provide artists with a comprehensive overview of potential programming venues across the UK, and collate opportunities that have been offered by many theatres, arts organisations, and individuals.
None of these activities generate income but for those who want, it’s possible to make donations to VAULT Festival and receive exclusive Festival treats as a thank you, including limited edition t-shirts and prints. There’s also the VAULT Festival Membership scheme, where you’ll be contributing to the future of VAULT Festival, directly supporting the next generation of artists to create, innovate and become the creators of the culture we love to watch.
Director & Co-Founder Andy George and Executive Director Adam Gray said: “VAULT Creative Studios is a brand-new offering for us, and one we hope will provide some support to those affected by the 2022 Festival’s cancellation. It’s a chance to share ideas, collaborate and feel connected to a community of artists. Cultivating and nurturing these voices at a grassroots level is integral to the future of VAULT Festival. The loss of VAULT Festival 2022 is devastating for us, our staff and for the artists involved – VAULT Creative Studios is our first step towards new creative activity for 2022.”
It may not be eight weeks of live culture but the incredible VAULT Creative Studios ensures these artists aren’t forgotten and that the core values of VAULT can still continue this February, helping artists and freelancers through this turbulent time.