If All Else Fails

Forced Entertainment

If All Else Fails is a production by the well-known British theatre collective Forced Entertainment and explores the theme of failure and the role it plays in our lives. It’s performed by Cathy Naden, one of the founding members of Forced Entertainment, and dancer and performer Seke Chimutengwende, who’s a close collaborator of a.o. DV8 Physical Theatre. The piece is a dialogue of speech and movement, questions and answers, absurdism and irony.

The audience is presented with a series of characters and scenarios struggling with some form of failure. The show aims to challenge our perception of failure and explore how we can learn and grow from our mistakes. It encourages us to embrace failure as an inevitable part of life and see it as an opportunity for personal growth.

Using their unique technique on the cross section between storytelling and verbal improvisation, this new production - as many others in the long history of the group - is as much a tribute to the complexity of human existence as much as an ironic comment to its evanescence.

"[If All Else Fails] has a tight format: based on a few sentences, Chimutengwende and Naden keep changing infinitely, always neatly one by one, in which they keep questioning and stretching the meaning of their thoughts a bit further. This way, each statement gets looked at from all sides, gets questioned, turned around, and restored again."- Marijn Lems,  NRC

"Naden and Chimutengwende keep changing their sentences just a tiny bit: in words, intonation, and rhythm. It is interesting to hear how a sentence with such little change can get a completely new meaning."- Juliette Georges, Theaterkrant

Forced Entertainment is a Sheffield-based theatre company founded in 1984. Touring and presenting their ground-breaking provocative performances across the UK and internationally the group have sustained a unique collaborative practice for nearly forty years, producing work that explores and often explodes the conventions of genre, narrative and theatre itself, drawing influence not just from drama but from dance, performance art, music culture and popular forms such as cabaret and stand-up. 

Led by the artist and writer Tim Etchells, the Forced Entertainment company includes designer and performer Richard Lowdon alongside performers Robin Arthur, Claire Marshall, Cathy Naden and Terry O’Connor. Over the years this core ensemble has been augmented by contributions from many guest artists and performers.


Seke Chimutengwende is a versatile artist who works as a choreographer, performer, movement director and teacher. He has collaborated with various dance companies, such as DV8 Physical Theatre, Lost Dog, Forced Entertainment and Sue MacLaine Company. Since 2006, Seke has been exploring completely improvised performance using movement and text, and has performed over 70 solo improvisations globally. He has also collaborated with many dancers, actors and musicians for ensemble improvisations.

With over 40 years of experience as an actor and performer, Tyrone Huggins is a seasoned professional. In 1979, he co-founded Impact Theatre Co-operative, an experimental visual theatre company, and toured nationally and internationally in thirteen devised productions over five years. He has also worked with other renowned companies such as Temba, People Show, Hesitate & Demonstrate, Talawa, Paines Plough, and Graeme Miller Company.


Director: Tim Etchells

Devised and performed by Seke Chimutengwende & Cathy Naden

With input from Robin Arthur, Richard Lowdon, Claire Marshall and Terry O’Connor

Dramaturgy: Tyrone Huggins

Lighting Design: Jim Harrison

Design: Richard Lowdon

Production Management: Jim Harrison

If All Else Fails is a Forced Entertainment production. Co-produced by Cambridge Junction & Sheffield Theatres.


Photos: Hugo Glendinning



21/05/2023 18:30 tickets sold out cancelled Waiting list

22/05/2023 19:00 tickets sold out cancelled Waiting list


€17,50 / €14,50


Het Huis Utrecht Theaterzaal


SPRING 2023 


Duration: around 80 minutes

Language: English


There will be some flashing lights and short loud moments in the soundtrack. 

Besides single tickets, SPRING also offers passe-partouts for the whole festival and daypasses for Fri 19, Sat 20, Sun 21, Fri 26, and Sat 27 May.


SPRING passe-partout