Programming Awards

Each year, VAULT Festival announces its Civic Awards, and collaborates with partner organisations to recognise exceptional work from other festivals. Here are the Programming Awards that were awarded for VAULT Festival 2023.

VAULT Festival's Pick of Pleasance

Liv Ello: Swarm by Liv Ello

After a hit run at Edinburgh Fringe, SWARM returned to VAULT Festival as the ‘Pick of the Pleasance.’

A response to when David Cameron referred to migrants as a “swarm”, SWARM asks: are migrants seeking refuge in the UK really the toxic demographic pervading British society, or is it us?

From ‘anarchist clown’ and theatre-maker Liv Ello, the director of the Edinburgh Fringe and Soho Theatre smash-hit, Frankie Thompson’s CAttS (Time Out’s Top 10 Comedy Picks of The Fringe, ★★★★ Guardian, ★★★★ Time Out, ★★★★★ To Do List, ★★★★★ Funny Women)

VAULT Festival Pick of Summerhall Award

Intruder | Intruz by Remi Rachuba

Following his dream, Remi moves to Scotland to become an actor. Ugly and a vicious attack almost ruins his life…

Shortlisted for Adrian Pagan Playwriting Award at the King’s Head Theatre, and on the final shortlist in the BBC Writersroom Drama

Rachuba’s writing is heart-wrenching, unique and brutal. With elements of black humour and clever twists, the play keeps the audience transfixed, to witness a moving portrayal of acceptance and the ultimate forgiveness.

VAULT Festival Excellence in Accessibility Award Winner

Part of the Main

Part of the Main brought a trio of captivating tales to VAULT Festival 2023.

Bloody Mary: Live!
Co-Produced by Part of the Main and Part of the Night
Teen Queen Mary Tudor takes to the mic to rehab her “bloody” image. Bloody Mary tackles the drama every #queenager deals with: divorced parents, sibling rivalry and religious purges (…oops).

The Tinker
Frank and Evelyn open their rural home to a stranger in need. The Tinker has a way with words and a talent for fixing broken things–but at what price?

All By Myself
by Part of the Main & Jessica Bickel-Barlow
POV: you’re a vlogger. A productive (but chill!) DIYing vlogger. It’s the end of the world. What do you do when everyone’s left the internet?

VAULT Festival Excellence in Sustainability Award Winner

My Lover was a Salmon in the Climate Apocalypse by Bradán

This gig gets weird. Join us, and return to being a fish.

Humanity’s ruined the ecosystem, but humanity’s just a dodgy side branch of fish evolution. The solution’s clear – and that’s where the salmon come in.

Fin’s climate anxiety culminates in him thinking he’s a salmon, onstage, whilst his girlfriend and bandmate look on in fishy horror. This could be a climate revolution.

But being a salmon would put a certain stress on everyone’s personal lives. And actually that’s a good question to ask: can our relationships survive this overwhelming timeline we’re in at all? (Features salmon.)

With live trad music, FX pedal soundscapes, global industrial food production, colonialism, fish farming, and probably inevitable ecological destruction?

VAULT Festival Excellence in Inclusion Award Winner

Best in Class hosted by Sian Davies

A crowd funded profit sharing show that champions the rich talent of working class comedians. Winner of Edinburgh Comedy Awards Panel Prize 2022. Sponsored by waste grounds, knock off trainers, spam, weed, the unions, crap schools, bunking off, failed MOT’s, failed GCSE’s, bus stops, payday loans, fierce mums, tired dads and empowerment.

Hosted by award winning comedian Sian Davies (“Compelling and distinctive” The Scotsman) and featuring a mixed bill of the very best new comic voices, who just so happen to be from working class backgrounds.

Best In Class alumni have gone on to achieve fantastic successes within their comedy careers. Graduates of the project have had nominations for Best Comedy Show at the Edinburgh Fringe Awards, created shows for BBC Radio 4, signed for agents, gained TV work, created sell out shows and had critically acclaimed work.

Join the revolution, it’s great fun!


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