I had no idea the Vault festival even existed until yesterday, when I went to review ‘BattleActs’, a comedy improv show which is taking place in one of the many performance spaces these cavernous vaults have on offer. That’s a shame because the festival ends on 8th March.
BattleActs is a neat, one act show with five people: four comedy performers and an affable host who guides the audience through the sixty minute format. The performers are divided into blue and red teams who must compete for points via a series of games, like the Alphabet game, where performers say one line of dialogue each with the first letter of the sentence going sequentially up the alphabet (or backwards. Or ending with the letter). Watching the actors effortlessly manage this (or not) provides much of the amusement, as does the humorous selection of bizarre and surreal scenarios the actors must play out.
There’s lots of audience participation and I can imagine that the show becomes riotous and bawdy at the 9.30pm show, especially at the weekend. At 5pm on a Sunday, we were rather more subdued.
We had a good time, laughing often, with BattleActs providing a short, sharp dose of comedy on an otherwise drab Sunday afternoon. It won’t change your life but try to get along: maybe make a day of it and catch a few shows at the Vault festival. There’s food & drink available and a great atmosphere – I can’t think of many better ways to while away a day (or night).
Reviewed by Jody Tranter
BattleActs is playing at the Vault Festival until 1 March 2015. Click here for more information and to book tickets.