Burkina Faso/Mali

Faso Danse Theatre

Simply The Best West Africa

West Africa has an extraordinarily lively contemporary dance scene, largely almost unnoticed by the rest of the world, with highly autonomous aesthetics. Choreographer Serge Aimé Coulibaly of Burkina Faso, director of Faso Danse Théâtre, is one of the creative minds setting things in motion here. A few years ago in his home country, he set up a competition for solo choreography that received applications from all over West Africa. Three of the pieces that the multidisciplinary jury selected for distinction, choreographed and danced by the prize winners, are now coming to the Migros Culture Percentage Dance Festival Steps. Under Faso Danse Théâtre’s title Simply the Best West Africa, they present a high-quality multifaceted showcase of West African dance: In Spirit, Adonis Nebié explores movement against the backdrop of the relationship between body and spirit. Florent Nikiema tells of the search for inner peace in Kobéndé. Finally, Fatoumata Bagayogo dares to ruthlessly address her own history and the fate of circumcision.

Serge Aime Coulibaly

Serge Aime Coulibaly

Dancer and choreographer Serge Aimé Coulibaly founded the solo choreography competition Simply the Best West Africa. Although his style was initially moulded in his own country, this artist from Bobo-Dioulasso in Burkina Faso has also been influenced by work with Alain Platel, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Salia Ni Seydou and Claude Brumachon. He founded Faso Danse Théâtre in 2003. His works deal with topics like social injustice, immigration and hopelessness among young people, with the goal of opening up new ways to encourage others and to get them to believe in themselves. Picture: Sophie Garcia

Fatoumata Bagayogo

Fatoumata Bagayogo

Fatoumata Bagayogo, born in 1989 in Bamako, Mali, was already dancing at traditional family ceremonies at a young age, like many children in her area. After professional dance training in her home city, she continued her education in workshops, for instance under Germaine Acogny at École des Sables, as well as under Régine Chopinot. She works as a dancer, choreographer and teacher. With her solo Fatou t’as tout fait, she won first prize in the Simply the Best competition. At the festival Zürcher Theater Spektakel in 2017, this piece won the ZKB Acknowledgement Prize. Picture: Emma Damarise

Adonis Nebie

Adonis Nebie

Dancer and choreographer Adonis Nebié, born in Burkina Faso, dances for Souleymane Porgo’s company Teguerer and for Compagnie Irène Tassembédo. He regularly continues his education under Salia Sanou, Wim Vandekeybus and Patrick Acogny, as well as at Germaine Acogny’s École des Sables in Senegal. He joined Faso Danse Théâtre in 2011. He has presented his own works in several West African countries, as well as in Lyon and Aix-en-Provence. He teaches worldwide and organises workshops. Picture: Quentin Bertoux

Florent Nikiema

Florent Nikiema

Florent Sidnoma Nikiema, born in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, started his dance career with urban dance. He holds a diploma in dance and a diploma in dance teaching from École des Sables in Senegal. He works with Germaine Acogny, Régine Chopinot, Angelin Preljocaj and Salia Ni Seydou, among others. His choreographic style combines traditional and contemporary dance elements, while urban and capoeira techniques are also incorporated. Picture: Tanaus


Fatou t’as tout fait3


1Adonis Nebié; 2Florent Nikiema; 3Fatoumata Bagayogo

Coordination and artistic accompaniment:

Serge Aimé Coulibaly


3Emmanuel Wandji


1Adonis Nebié; 2Florent Nikiema; 3Fatoumata Bagayogo


1Alice Dussart; 3Yacouba Magassouba, Hermann Coulibaly


1Adonis Nebié; 2Florent Nikiema; 3Fatoumata Bagayogo


Migros Culture Percentage Dance Festival Steps


1First version 2014, new version December 2016, Bobo-Dioulasso (Burkina Faso); 2November 2015, Dense Bamako Danse Festival (Mali); 316th of December 2016, Bobo-Dioulasso (Burkina Faso)

Swiss premiere

More information:

Faso Danse Théâtre