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ça va ça va le monde !
© Christophe Raynaud de Lage

"Ça va, ça va le monde!" at the Avignon Festival, from 11 to 15 July 2021

With the "Ça va, ça va le monde!" cycle of readings, RFI is bringing authors based in Africa or Haiti who have not yet been published outside their own country to the Avignon Festival and its radio stations.

Published on 02/07/2021

5 min

For this 9th edition, "Ça va, ça va le monde!" offers a programme that is open to the diaspora and multilingual Africa. Their works can be heard every morning in the Cour du Lycée Vincent de Paul, Avignon, and then on the airwaves of RFI during the summer from 11 to 15 July 2021.


11 July at 11 am - La Cargaison, by Souleymane Bah (Guinea)

Read by Serge Yéroné Koto, Vincent Minne, Nadège Ouedraogo.  Sound design: Pierre-Alexandre Lampert

A cargo of corpses is lost in the city. Inside are the victims of a blind police repression. Written after the bloody demonstrations of October 2019 in Conakry, this polyphonic piece gives voice to the dead, the hearse and even the bullets, telling of the absurdity of mass death. It is uncompromising writing, sometimes violent and desperate, sometimes lyrical, where tragedy has the first and last word: ça rafale, ça s’affale, ça mord, ça meurt! ('it gusts, it slumps, it bites, it dies!') 

Souleymane Bah, a journalist and politically committed citizen, says that he got into theatre writing by breaking and entering. His first text Danse avec le Diable (featured in the 2019 RFI cycle) dates from 2015 and already denounces the madness of political regimes where all democracy is confiscated. Exiled to France since the end of 2016, he has continued his work as an author with Jamais deux sans proie, Diata, and then with La Cargaison, which won the RFI Théâtre 2020 Prize. Supported by the Atelier des Artistes en Exil and numerous residencies linked to the NORA grant and the RFI prize, Souleymane Bah continues his exploration of the absurdity of the world with the trilogy devoted to the violence that man is capable of inflicting to conquer or confiscate power. He created his play Danse avec le Diable, Sur la Pelouse by Hakim Bah, Les Châteaux de la Ruelle by Bilia Bah and directed several texts by Koffi Kwahulé. La Cargaison will premiere in 2022 at the Zébrures d'Automne in Limoges, directed by the author.


12 July at 11 am - Nuit de veille, by Kouam Tawa (Cameroon)

Read by Aminata Abdoulaye, Tom Adjibi, Vincent Minne, Babetida Sadjo, Ibrahima Diokine Sambou, Sophie Sénécaut.

It is the fiftieth anniversary of independence in an African village. The governing powers have made sure, as usual, that the commemoration is nothing but festivities, forgetting that the winds have changed. The people, for once, will make sure their voice is heard. A text written in 2016 by a master of parables, in reaction to censorship by the Cameroonian government. An inspection commission interrupted rehearsals for two performances planned for the fiftieth anniversary celebrations and ordered one of its members to write another play that would please the current president. Nuit de Veille was born out of this anger, giving a voice to the people: Ne nous oubliez pas, nous les délaissés de la grande Historie, ne nous oubliez pas! ('Don't forget us, we who have been left behind by the great History, don't forget us!') As this work lasts 4 hours, the author has kindly agreed to edit it.

Playwright, poet and director Kouam Tawa was born in 1974 in Bafoussam in the West of Cameroon. He lives in his native town and devotes himself to literature, theatre and running writing workshops. Author of some twenty books, including fifteen for young people, he has been involved in the Festival des Francophonies at Le 104 a number of times as part of the Africa2020 season and for each edition of the Recréâtrales in Ouagadougou. He was also an actor in Andréya Ouamba's show De quoi sommes-nous faits? His last four plays, Sita, Nuit de veille, Mille et une femmes and Et caetera, were finalists for the RFI Théâtre Prize and he has received a lot of support, including the Des Mots à la Scène fund from the Institut français.


13 July at 11 am - Murs-Murs, based on "Onions make us cry" by Zainabu Jallo; Adapted by Carole Karemera (Nigeria/Rwanda)

Directed and read by Cecilia Kankonda, Carole Umulinga Karemera.

Two women in an enclosed space. One has killed her husband, the other is trying to understand. A murderer and a psychologist, whispers, pain and words to break the silence, to break the wall that separates these two women and to find the emotions that bring them together. Both are confronted with violence and the question of transmission and repetition, from generation to generation, within Rwandan society.

Carole Karemera is director of the Ishyo Arts Centre in Kigali and divides her career as an actress between France, Belgium and Rwanda, with some outstanding shows such as Rwanda 94 and Anathema by Jacques Delculvellerie, and Battlefield, Mahabharata by Peter Brook. With Murs-Murs, as with Felwine Sarr's We Call it Love, she presents shows that can be performed at home or on the stages of major festivals.

*Produced by Ishyo Arts Centre - Neva (Rwanda) / Théâtre de la Poudrerie, first performed in 2018. Co-produced by Compagnie Amounra (Belgium), with the support of the Commission Internationale du Théâtre Francophone and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie.


14 July at 11 am - Que ton règne vienne, by Gaëlle Bien-Aimé (Haiti)

Read by Vladimir Delva , Guy Regis Junior

Sound design: Pierre-Alexandre Lampert.

Two men find themselves trapped in the burning streets of Port-au-Prince, the daily life of every Haitian for three years. This is a climate of insurrection, evoking state crimes and femicides. An intimacy is created, perhaps a friendship, born of fear. The starting point of this work is the death of Regina, a photographer the author knew well, killed in 2015 by her companion on a pavement in Port-au-Prince. From that moment on," she says, "I couldn't stop thinking about the environment that supports this violence. I wanted to write from a man's point of view. A sincere or senseless point of view." Ten cases of femicide were recorded between January and March 2021. No legal proceedings were brought.

Que ton règne vienne is the second work by this young playwright who is also a journalist, actor, comedian and co-founder of "Acte", a drama school in Port-au-Prince. Following her classical education, Gaelle Bien-Aimé joined "Le Petit Conservatoire, school of theatre and speech arts in Haiti" in 2006, where she spent the next three years studying the performing arts. In 2010 she started to attend courses in Ethnodrama "Theatre and Ritual" at ESACT in Liege. In Haiti, she created her company "Corps et âme". She is also a political activist and member of the feminist organisation "Nègès Mawon".

Presented by Francophonies-Des Ecritures à la Scène and the Maison des Auteurs de Limoges, where the text was written during a writing residency.


15 July at 11 am - A demain ma mort by Michael Disanka (Democratic Republic of Congo)

Read by Edson Anibal and Gioia Kayaga. Accompanied by Rokia Bamba. (DJ)  

In a bar like the ones you might find in the suburbs of Kinshasa, this is the story of a young whistleblower called "IL" who finds himself in possession of information compromising a large number of public figures in his country. He has to choose between revealing all knowing that his life will depend on it, or remaining silent, like everyone else. Confronted with fear and doubt, IL begins to hallucinate under the loving eye of the trigger-happy bar owner/policewoman. He imagines several possible deaths in which he sees himself in the shoes of other deceased whistleblowers such as Floribert Chebeya, assassinated in 2010. "I wrote this play with a fragmented structure like my theatre," says the author, "because I write as I speak, that is to say, with an irreverent approach to syntax."

Michael Disanka is an actor, director and author of a work that he defines as "scratch theatre, a political theatre fed by the city of Kinshasa". He created the Collectif d'Art-d'Art with Christiana Tabaro and his career has been marked by a number of decisive encounters, including Dieudonné Niangouna, who directed two of his texts, 31 mai 2012 and La Poupoupète, and Faustin Linyekula. Winner of the SACD prize at the Impatience 2020 Festival, Sept Mouvements Congo has been performed at the Marseille Festival, the KVS in Brussels and Le 104 in Paris. His next piece Géométrie de vies will be performed at the Rencontres à l'échelle Festival in Marseille this autumn.


16 July at 11 am J'ai rendez-vous avec diEU by Asiimwe Deborah Kawe

Translated by Gisèle Joly / Maison Antoine Vitez, Centre International de la Traduction Théâtrale,

Read by Tom Adjibi, Karim Barras, Clémentine Coutant, Fatou Hane, Nancy Nkusi, Ibrahima Diokine Sambou and Sophie Sénécaut.  Sound design: Pierre-Alexandre Lampert.

In an unnamed developing country, a group of visa applicants for the United States sit apprehensively in the waiting room, exchanging stories and tips on the best way to present themselves to the American consular authorities: the "diEUx". Everyone has different reasons for travelling to the US, but will the "diEUx" want to consider them? Written in 2013, J’ai rendez-vous avec diEU ('Appointment with gOD') is a lucid, funny and poignant exploration of the US visa application process from the perspective of "third world" nationals. One of Asiimwe's talents," says her translator, "is the ability to convey the political fable in all its violence and absurdity in a lyrical and humane theatrical form.

Asiimwe Deborah Kawe is an author, director and performer. She is currently artistic director of the Tebere Arts Foundation and co-artistic director of the Kampala International Theatre Festival. She has written a dozen plays, including Forgotten World, Cooking Oil, Un-entitled, Do they Know it's Khristmas? and Will Smith Look-Alike, a BBC award-winning radio play in 2010. J'ai rendez avec diEU is her first text translated into French as part of the Africa2020 Season. The text was born out of a personal experience that seemed like a nightmare in the early 2000s when the author was invited to a student theatre workshop at Townson University in Baltimore, USA.

The Institut français and the project

The Ça va, ça va le Monde! cycle is conceived and coordinated by Pascal Paradou and directed by Armel Roussel, assisted by Valentina Sanges, supported by the SACD for radio cultural action, Wallonie-Bruxelles International and the Institut français. 

L'institut français, LAB