A Rendez-vous in Africa

A collaborative work with the dancers of Compagnie Béliga Kopé (Directed by Béliga Kopé)






















































“We had never met before yet we decided to get together in Yopougon, on the Ivory Coast. We have each given and received, shared. For me, it was my first ‘rendez-vous’ in Africa. I had never had the opportunity to work with dancers from the African continent before. None of them had ever crossed a European dancer or choreographer.

There were smiles, lots of passion, a bit of magic, sometimes some unsolvable mysteries, a means of listening beyond words but especially a culture shock from which certain sparks generated a sense. It was up to us to seize the moment.

As can be observed, these dancers are essentially formed in the practise of traditional Ivorian dance. I have defined the structure of what could be a choreographical attempt around the theme of the meeting through concentrating on the value of our differences which contrary to what may be supposed, unify more than distance us. 

The piece is therefore a choreogrphique work for 7 Ivorian dancers with contemporary writing. For the base of this writing it will be important to elaborate what will be the gesture and then the phrase which serve in the construction of this ‘rendez-vous’. For this task I am deconstructing and more precisely decomposing, certain traditional movements. Through playing with the notions of support and speed to finally reveal a new form. I am also playing with new musical structures and so move away from conventional percussion. So I have chosen, amongst other pieces, to use baroque music which strangely echoes in a certain number of traditional steps. It is also in all probability within this unusual musical and dance ‘rapport’ that our research should be placed.
Finally, it is also a question of developing what I call ‘the choreogrphical architecture’ of this project. The organisation of space and then time necessitates a construction, a partition where the tangle of dances, of dancers and their movements interweave a fabric and, in accordance with my most intimate of artistic interests , let appear a trace which is witness to this moment of interaction between the young choreographer that I am and the dancers from ‘over there’, Yopougon.

A word about ‘tracks’…

…those which the ‘white’ western world has left on others as an impregnation, an alienation.

Instead of defending themselves, they (the others) would have, without rancor and moulded by humanity, probably known how to deal with it through light-heartedness, detachment and distance, as if to better reveal certain truths inherited from our communal history and shared only very recently.”

Extracts from notebook - Yopougon, Ivory Coast, 3rd March 2009









Choreography: Herve KOUBI, assisted by Guillaume Gabriel

Artists: The dancers of the Compagnie Béliga Kopé: Anita Kehi GNINOMPONROU / Richemond Désiré KRAGBA / Stéphanie Blé TIALOU / Mathe Sandrine TÉTÉDÉ / Donald Oman KELASSEMON / Jean Ohouman N’da AGBAKOU / Ouattara MOUSSA

Director of Compagnie Béliga Kopé: Béliga Kopé (artistic director) Repeaters and correspondants on the Ivory Coast: Elodie Landra and Michel Béliga Kopé

Music: Jean Philippe Rameau, Johann Strauss

Original musical composition: Stéphane Fromentin et Gaël Desbois

Lighting: Lionel Buzonie



Production : Compagnie Hervé KOUBI

With the help of la DRAC Limousin, the Communauté d’Agglomération de la Ville de Brive, the Centres Socio-culturels Jacques Cartier et Raoul Dautry de Brive, of the Ville de Lissac-sur-Couze, of the Ville de Chartrier Ferrière, of the Ville de Saint Viance, the Centre Culturel Français d’Abidjan, and the Goethe Institut d’Abidjan.






3rd July 2009: ‘Festival Africain de Malemort sur Corrèze’
11th April 2010: ‘Palais de la Culture d'Abidjan’ – Ivory Coast
20th July 2010: ‘Festival e Contes’ (within the programme of ‘Estivales du Conseil Général des Alpes Maritimes’) 
24th July 2010: ‘Jardins des serres de la Madonne’
27th July 2010: ‘Festival Danse’ at the ‘Château de Roquebrune-Cap-Martin’
28th July 2010: ‘Festival La danse sous toutes ses formes Puget-Théniers’ (in the programme of ‘Estivales du Conseil Général des Alpes Maritimes’) 
31st July 2010: ‘Festival de Montignac’ 
3rd August 2010: Uzerche
4th August 2010: ‘Festival des Bastides’ – Sauveterre de Rouergue
5th August 2010: ‘Festival des Bastides’ - Villeneuve d'Aveyron
7th September 2010: Malemort sur Corrèze
10th September 2010: ‘Centre culturel de Segré’  
11th September 2010: ‘la Boite à Culture de Bouchemaine’
26th September 2010: ‘Festival Cadences Arcachon’ – ‘Scène conventionnée plateau pour la danse’
2nd October 2010: ‘Quai des rêves de Lamballe’ 
8th October 2010: ‘Conservatoire de Musique et de Danse de Calais Auditorium Didier Lockwood’ 
11th and 12th October 2010: ‘Maison de l'Art et de la Communication de Sallaumines’ (3 representations) 
16th October 2010: ‘Centre Culturel de Saint Gratien’ 
22nd October 2010: ‘La Méridienne de Lunéville’
4th November 2010: ‘Centre Culturel Jean-Pierre Fabrègue’ in Saint Yrieix la Perche
9th November 2010: ‘Théâtre de Cahors’
19th November 2010: ‘Palais Croisette de Cannes’ 
26th November 2010: ‘Espace Louise Labbé de Saint Symphorien d'Ozon’ 
2nd December 2010: ‘Théâtre Tivoli de Montargis’
3rd December 2010: ‘Yzeure espace’
17th December 2010: ‘Centre Culturel de Léon’ 
7th January 2011: ‘Théâtre du Donjon de Pithiviers’ (2 representations)
14th and the 15th January 2011: ‘Théâtre de Bressuire’ 
18th January 2011: ‘Palais des congrès de Saint Raphaël’ (2 representations)
From the 20th to the 23rd January 2011: ‘District central de Moscou et Région de Lipetsk’ ( in the course of confirmation) 
25th January 2011: ‘L'Espace Culturel Louis Aragon de Saint Vallier’ (2 representations)
26th January 2011: ‘L'Embarcadère de montceau-les mines’
28th January 2011: ‘Centre culturel de Tourouvre’ (in collaboration with the ‘Office Départemental de la Culture de l'Orne’)
29th January 2011: ‘Centre Culturel de Mêle du Sarthe’ (in collaboration with the ‘Office Départemental de la Culture de l'Orne’)
1st February 2011: ‘Salle Tahiti de Gacé’ (in collaboration with the ‘Office Départemental de la Culture de l'Orne’)
4th February 2011: ‘Centre Culturel L’Hermine de Sarzeau’ 
11th and 12th February 2011: ‘Palais des congrès de Loudéac’ 
14th to the 18th February 2011: ‘Centre Culturel de Vitré’ 
25th February 2011: ‘Sémaphore de Cébazat’ – ‘Scène conventionnée’ (2 representations) 
1st to the 12th March 2011: ‘Théâtre de l'Olivier d'Istres’ 
18 March 2011: ‘Forum Jacques Prévert de Carros’ 
1st April 2011: ‘Médoquine de Talence’
5th April 2011: ‘Théâtre de Cusset’