Live stream of Forced Entertainment’s Complete Works

Join us on 1–9 September and watch an extraordinary retelling of every Shakespeare play ever written

A salt and pepper pot 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, over nine days, Forced Entertainment performers condense every Shakespeare play ever written into a series of 36 intimate and lovingly made miniatures, played out on a one metre tabletop using a collection of everyday objects.

The extended performance of Complete Works: Tabletop Shakespeare  takes place at the prestigious Theaterfestival Basel in Switzerland. The British Council is live streaming it in order to make it accessible to a wide audience, as part of our commitment to share outstanding UK arts with the world. It forms part of Shakespeare Lives, our global celebration of Shakespeare’s work that takes place throughout 2016.

The core members of Forced Entertainment have sustained a unique artistic partnership for more than 30 years. The company has long had an obsession with virtual or described performance. Over the years, it’s explored the possibilities of conjuring extraordinary scenes, images and narratives using language alone.

“Forced Entertainment open up the imaginative landscape of the plays”

Complete Works explores the dynamic force of narrative in a simple and idiosyncratic summary of Shakespeare’s comedies, tragedies, histories and late plays. It’s made up of 36 mini performances, each of which are 45 minutes long, and it creates worlds as vivid as they are strange. Join us for an epic yet intimate experience.

“Forced Entertainment open up the imaginative landscape of the plays” The Guardian on Complete Works: Tabletop Shakespeare

“Near legendary… at the forefront of performance and innovation" The Stage on Forced Entertainment

Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare is a Forced Entertainment production. Co-produced by Berliner Festspiele – Foreign Affairs Festival and Theaterfestival Basel. The performances at Theaterfestival Basel are supported by Stanley Thomas Johnson Foundation. The live stream is made possible by British Council in 2016, in collaboration with University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland.

Find out more: 

> Check out the running order from Theaterfestival Basel. Performances take place at 17:00–21:00 (UK time) every day on 1–9 September 2016

> Watch the trailer

Join the conversation on Twitter #CompleteWorks

Read an interview about the production with director Tim Etchells

Experience an online festival of Shakespeare as part of our Shakespeare Lives celebrations with the BBC

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