A Forced Entertainment performance based on award-winning novel The Notebook (1986), by Hungarian writer Ágota Kristóf. Directed by Tim Etchells, The Notebook tells the story of twin brothers evacuated to the Hungarian countryside during World War II, to stay at their impoverished grandmother’s farm. Understanding the world by a harsh private code, the unnamed narrators are slowly revealed as struggling moralists as Central Europe crumbles into vice, cruelty and opportunism. Kristóf’s narrational language – bold, crisp and reduced – provides the basis for a compelling performance.
Meeting with Tim Etchells and actors from Forced Entertainment after Tomorrow's Parties 21/06, 21:30
Tickets available at the box office – Teatr Nowy im. T. Łomnickiego (ul. Dąbrowskiego 5).
The work Sheffield-based Forced Entertainment make tries to explore what theatre and performance can mean in contemporary life and is always a kind of conversation or negotiation, something that needs to be live. The group are interested in making performances that excite, challenge, question and entertain. They’re interested in courting confusion as well as laughter.
They group began working together in 1984; in the many projects created since then they have made lists, played games, spoken gibberish, stayed silent, made a mess, dressed up, stripped down, confessed to it all, performed magic tricks, told jokes, clowned around, played dead, got drunk, told stories and performed for six, twelve and even 24 hours at a stretch. They’ve worked on texts, they’ve danced and moved, they’ve fixed things meticulously, they’ve improvised. They’ve made serious work that turned out to be comical, and comical work that turned out to be deadly serious, digging deep into theatre and performance, thinking about what those things might be for them and what kinds of dialogue they can open with contemporary audiences.
As well as performance works, the company have made gallery installations, site-specific pieces, books, photographic collaborations, videos and even a mischievous guided bus tour. In many ways the 6 core members – a unique 30 year artistic collaboration – are the bedrock of everything the group does, a rare example of people building, maintaining and continuing to develop a vocabulary, a way of working and innovating together over a long period of time.
Forced Entertainment are: Robin Arthur, Tim Etchells (Artistic Director), Richard Lowdon (Designer), Claire Marshall, Cathy Naden and Terry O’Connor.
Conceived and devised by the company Robin Arthur, Tim Etchells, Richard Lowdon, Claire Marshall, Cathy Naden and Terry O’Connor
Performers: Robin Arthur, Richard Lowdon
Direction: Tim Etchells
Design: Richard Lowdon
Lighting Design: Jim Harrison
Production: Jim Harrison
The Notebook is a Forced Entertainment production. Co-produced by PACT Zollverein (Essen); LIFT (London) and 14–18 NOW, WW1 Centenary Art Commissions, supported by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England. A House on Fire co-commission with HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin), Kaaitheater (Brussels), Teatro Maria Matos (Lisbon), LIFT and Malta Festival Poznan with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union. Development work generously supported by Lancaster Institute of Contemporary Arts (LICA).
The Notebook is based on Le grand cahier by Ágota Kristóf, Éditions du Seuil, Paris, 1986. English translation (c) (1988) by Alan Sheridan.
Forced Entertainment Creative Team: Robin Arthur, Tim Etchells (Artistic Director), Richard Lowdon (Designer), Claire Marshall, Cathy Naden and Terry O’Connor.
Forced Entertainment Management Team: Eileen Evans (Executive Director), Jim Harrison (Production Manager), Natalie Simpson (Office Manager), Sam Stockdale (Marketing Manager).