June 30, 2018 - New York, NY

NYU Skirball Presents Forced Entertainment Theater

Two New York Premieres from the U.K.’s Acclaimed Experimental Theatre Company

And on the Thousandth Night….

Overnight Storytelling Marathon begins at Midnight  

September 8 at Midnight – September 9 at 6 am


Complete Works:Table Top Shakespeare


All 36 Shakespeare plays, starring a “cast” of everyday household objects


September 11 – September 16


NYU Skirball’s 2018-19 season will open at midnight on September 8, 2018 with two New York premieres from Forced Entertainment, one of the U.K.’s most exciting experimental theater companies: And on the Thousandth Night…, an overnight fairytale of epic proportions, and Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare, a six-night retelling of the entire Shakespearean canon – with everyday household objects standing in for the heroes and heroines.



Saturday, September 8 at midnight – Sunday, September 9 at 6 am


This may be the longest all-night bedtime story ever told. Inspired by the classic story, “One Thousand and One Nights,” Tales of the Arabian Nights, the storytelling begins at midnight and continues until dawn, with never-ending tales that explore the relationship between a story, its storyteller, and its audience.


A story is told, made up live, dragged from memory by a line of performers who compete, interrupting, exaggerating, taking over each other’s narratives and incorporating stolen bits into their own tales. It is a long, mutating and endlessly self-cancelling story. It’s a story that shifts register and genre – from folk tale to parable, from pub anecdote to half-remembered film plot, from raucous joke to ghost story, kids story or philosophical fable.  Video Clip: And on the Thousandth Night 

Audiences are free to come and go over the course of the six-hour performance.



Tuesday, September 11 – Sunday, September 16

A salt and pepper shaker for the king and queen. A ruler for the prince. A spoon for the servant. Lighter fluid for the Innkeeper. A water bottle for the messenger.


One by one, Forced Entertainment performers condense every Shakespeare play ever written into a series of 36 intimate and lovingly made miniatures, played out on an everyday table-top using a collection of un-extraordinary everyday objects. The stories of the plays vividly come to life over six nights, as the act of storytelling and theater itself is celebrated.


Forced Entertainment has long had an obsession with virtual or described performance, exploring in different ways over the years the possibilities of conjuring extraordinary scenes, images and narratives using language alone. In a brand-new direction for the company, Complete Worksexplores the dynamic force of narrative in a simple and idiosyncratic summary of Shakespeare’s comedies, tragedies, histories and late plays, creating worlds as vivid as they are strange. Video trailer: Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare


Tickets for each play are $10; a four-play discount is available for $30. (See below for complete schedule).


About the Company

Forced Entertainment, based in Sheffield, U.K., was founded in 1984 by six theater artists who have sustained a unique collaborative practice for more than thirty years, confirming their position as trailblazers in contemporary theater. Touring and presenting their ground-breaking provocative performances across the UK, mainland Europe, North America, Japan, Australia and further afield, the group produces work that explores and often explodes the conventions of genre, narrative and theater itself, drawing influence not just from drama but from dance, performance art, music culture and popular forms such as cabaret and stand-up.


The company’s substantial canon of work reflects an interest in the mechanics of performance, the role of the audience and the machinations of contemporary urban life. Its trademark collaborative process – devising work as a group through improvisation, experimentation and debate – has made them pioneers of British avant-garde theater and earned them an unparalleled international reputation. www.forcedentertainment.com/



Tuesday, September 11

6:30 pm Antony and Cleopatra   Cathy Naden

7:30 pm  The Merchant of Venice   Nicki Hobday

8:30 pm Richard II   Terry O’Connor

9:30 pm As You Like It   Robin Arthur


Wednesday, September 12

6:30 pm  Taming of the Shrew   Nicki Hobday

7:30 pm  Henry IV Part 1   Jerry Killick

8:30 pm  Henry IV Part 2   Jerry Killick

9:30 pm  Much Ado About Nothing   Richard Lowdon


Thursday September 13

6:30 pm  Henry V   Nicki Hobday

7:30 pm  Pericles   Cathy Naden

8:30 pm  The Comedy of Errors  Terry O’Connor

9:30 pm  King Lear     Robin Arthur


Friday, September 14

6:30 pm  Henry VI Part1   Richard Lowdon

7:30 pm  Henry VI Part 2   Richard Lowdon

8:30 pm  Henry VI Part 3   Richard Lowdon

9:30 pm  Twelfth Night   Jerry Killick


Saturday, September 15, matinee

11:00 am Othello   Cathy Naden

12:00 pm Love’s Labour’s Lost   Robin Arthur

1:00 pm  Coriolanus   Jerry Killick

2:00 pm  The Merry Wives of Windsor   Terry O’Connor

3:00 pm  Macbeth   Richard Lowdon


Saturday, September 15, evening

5:00 pm  Richard III   Nicki Hobday

6:00 pm  Troilus and Cressida   Jerry Killick

7:00 pm  Julius Caesar   Robin Arthur

8:00 pm  The Winter’s Tale   Cathy Naden

9:00 pm  HamletTerry O’Connor


Sunday, September 16, matinee

11:00 am Titus Andronicus   Robin Arthur

12:00 pm Cymbeline   Terry O’Connor

1:00 pm  All’s Well That Ends Well   Nicki Hobday

2:00 pm  King John   Cathy Naden

3:00 pm  A Midsummer Night’s Dream   Jerry Killick


Sunday, September 16, evening

5:00 pm  Romeo and Juliet   Terry O’Connor

6:00 pm  Timon of Athens   Robin Arthur

7:00 pm Measure for Measure   Cathy Naden

8:00 pm  Two Gentlemen of Verona   Nicki Hobday

9:00 pm The Tempest Richard Lowdon



And on the Thousandth Night…: Saturday, September 8 at midnight. Tickets are $15

Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare: September 11 – September 16 (see schedule, above).  Tickets for each play are $10; a four-play discount is available for $30.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.nyuskirball.org, by phone at 212.998.4941, or in person at the Box Office, 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square: Tuesday-Saturday, 12:00–6:00 P.M.  NYU Skirball is located at 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square, New York, New York 10012. www.nyuskirball.org


About NYU Skirball

NYU Skirball, located in the heart of Greenwich Village, is one of New York City’s major presenters of international work, and has been the premier venue for cultural and performing arts events in lower Manhattan since 2003. The 800-seat theater, led by Director Jay Wegman, provides a home for internationally renowned artists, innovators and thinkers. NYU Skirball hosts over 300 events annually, from re-inventions of the classics to cutting-edge premieres, in genres ranging from dance, theater and performance arts to comedy, music and film.

NYU Skirball’s unique partnership with New York University enables it to draw on the University’s intellectual riches and resources to enhance its programming with dialogues, public forums and conversations with artists, philosophers, scientists, Nobel Laureates and journalists.

Jay Wegman is the Director of NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. Prior to Skirball, he served as Director of the Abrons Art Center for ten years. During his tenure, Abrons was awarded various honors, including a 2014 OBIE Award for Innovative Excellence and a 2015 Bessie Award for Best Production. He was also a Fellow at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., and for over a decade served as the first Canon for Liturgy and the Arts at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. He is the recipient of the 2015 FRANKY award for “making a long-term, extraordinary impact on contemporary theatre and performance in New York City.” While not a performer, he has appeared in Brian Roger’s film “Screamers” (2018), Sibyl Kempson’s “12 Shouts to the Ten Forgotten Heavens” (2017), and “Romper Room” (1969). Jay is a graduate of Yale University. www.nyuskirball.org.


Subways: A, B, C, D, E, F, M to West 4th St.; R & W to 8th Street; 6 to Astor Place.

Programs, artists and ticket prices are subject to change.


Download photos here:   Forced Entertainment Photos

Click on the individual photo to see caption/credits


Video: Credit – Hugo Glendinning

Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare

And on the Thousandth Night