Bad news for London’s subterranean hedonists – in a blog posted today entitled ‘It’s time to say goodbye’, the Old Vic Tunnels announced its closure as of March 15 this year (though it’s not entirely clear if any further events will actually be held in the venue between now and then). It originally launched as an ultra hip, word-of-mouth venue with Punchdrunk’s immersive ‘Tunnel 228’ – a collaboration with the Old Vic – then Kevin Spacey’s theatre leased the old railway tunnels from Network Rail.
Since then, it’s played host to everything from the premiere of Banksy’s ‘Exit Through the Gift Shop’ film to a fundraiser hosted by Bill Clinton. If it wasn’t always a very consistent venue – largely because of the wildly eclectic programming – then it was generally considered to be a big success, but after three years it appears the Old Vic has decided not to renew the lease.
Old Vic said: ‘The Tunnels was an adventurous and exciting project which started as a temporary event and performance space in 2009 with the inaugural show Tunnel 228. Since then, The Tunnels have earned a reputation as one of the most creative spaces in London. In drawing this innovative project to a close we look back on three great years and are proud of the terrific range of events and productions that we have presented in the space.’
A shame, though if you’re looking to rent some tunnel space under Waterloo…