Forced Entertainment

Real MagicJan 18-Jan 20

Forced Entertainment: Real Magic (photo: Hugo Glendinning)

$23 | $30 WEEK OF • BUY TICKETS 8:00PM • Merrill Wright Mainstage

“Beckett meets trash TV.” —


Cue applause and canned laughter in a world of absurd disconnection, struggle, and comical repetition. A group of performers attempt an impossible illusion—part mind-reading feat, part cabaret act, part chaotic game show—in which they endlessly revisit moments of defeat, hope, and anticipation. Caught in a world of second chances and second guesses, variations and changes, distortions and transformations, this hallucinatory journey is packed with optimism, individual agency, and the desire for change.

Real Magic is performed by Richard Lowdon and Claire Marshall, members of the Forced Entertainment creative team, who are joined by regular FE collaborator Jerry Killick. 


Forced Entertainment is a group of six artists based in Sheffield, U.K. Founded in 1984, they make work in theatre and performance and tour to audiences around the world. They have made serious work that turned out to be comical, and comical work that turned out to be deadly serious, digging deep into what theatre and performance might mean and the kinds of dialogue it can open with contemporary audiences. Their many projects aim to excite, challenge, question, and entertain other people. FE is as much interested in confusion as they are in laughter. 


Real Magic is co-produced by PACT Zollverein Essen, HAU Hebbel Am Ufer Berlin, Künsterlhaus Moustonturm Frankfurt, Tanzquartier Wien Vienna, ACCA Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, University of Sussex, and the Spalding Gray Consortium — On the Boards, PS122, Walker Art Center, and The Andy Warhol Museum

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Don't miss Tomorrow's Parties, a special performance by Forced Entertainment on Sunday, Jan 21 at 5 pm. Learn more →