Street performers

Since the 1660s Covent Garden has never missed a chance to put on a performance. The first record of Covent Garden street entertainment came in 1662, when Samuel Pepys’ diary notes that a marionette show featuring a character named Punch took place on the Piazza. Today, the custom continues.

Where to Watch

West Piazza

North Hall

South Wells

All the world is a stage and none is more famous than the cobbles of Covent Garden.

For centuries, culture vultures have swooped on Covent Garden. They obviously relished the area’s eclectic, ever-changing mix or opera, ballet , musical theatre and drama, from highbrow and mainstream to fringe and beyond, all tastes are catered for and all emotion are stirred. No other urban quarter in the world has two great opera house and more than twenty thriving theatres.

West Piazza Street Performers

Frequently asked questions


  • How do I become a street performer?
    • Shaftesbury Capital has a clear process for auditioning to be a Street Performer within the Market Building, which they own.
    • Any other performance sites, including the West Piazza, James Street, and outside the LTM fall within Westminster City Council (WCC) remit
    • SHC’s audition process is as follows:

      • For all auditions please arrive by 10.15am at the latest at the North Hall to ensure you are registered
      • There will be a judging panel made up of representatives from the Courtyard Musicians Association, Street Performers Association & the Shaftesbury Capital Covent Garden Management Team
      • Each audition must last no longer than 3 minutes
      • These auditions are for performance slots in the North Hall, West Piazza and Courtyard
      • The North Hall pitch is predominantly for variety / circus acts with a structured show. Auditioning acts need to show a high degree of skill and the ability to build a rapport with the audience
      • The Courtyard pitch is for classical vocalists and instrumentalists. Vocalists should not be amplified although they can have a backing track
      • All auditioned performers will be contacted within one week of their audition in writing. They will receive feedback and confirmation of the audition result. All decisions are final
      • Please note there is no capacity for acoustic guitarists or singer/songwriters
      • We do not allow any woodwind instruments, brass instruments, electric guitars, drums, accordions, bagpipes, saxophones, or didgeridoos to be played here at Covent Garden
      • NB We are unable to supply electricity, all equipment must be battery powered

    The next dates for auditions are as follows

    • Monday 8th July 2024
    • Monday 7th October 2024 

    If you are unsuccessful in your audition, try

  • How do I become a street performer in Covent Garden?

    To perform on James Street, the West, East and North Piazza and The Market Building please contact Westminster Council or speak to one of the performers

Watch some of Covent Garden's Performers below

Covent Garden South Wells is home to Classical Performances (filmed in 2019)

Rob Falsini singing a cover of Chasing Cars in Covent Garden

West Piazza Performance from 2019