Yinka Shonibare

Divide and Rule

Khalid Koujili El Yakoubi
10x10 collaboration with VIERNULVIER
Thu 26 Jan 20:00
26 Jan
  • 26 Jan
    in, Gent
    Arts Centre VIERNULVIER - Ghent (BE)

On the absurdity of the colonisation of Africa.

Divide and Rule is a theatrical interpretation of the Berlin Conference (15.11.1884–26.02.1885). At this conference, the map of Africa was divided among European rulers, supposedly ‘for the benefit of civilisation’. 

Divide and Rule highlights this historical event and the complex theme of colonisation in an accessible way, in an absurd style that brings together documentary and grotesque theatre. In the play, it’s not only the rulers of Belgium, France, Germany and England sitting around the table together with the British explorer Henry Morton Stanley: Africa is also present as a character. 

Historical facts and characters are magnified and linked to contemporary dynamics. The absurd objectification of Africa is theatrically translated into a performance in which text, music, image and physical play meet.  

A piece that doesn’t shy away from the historically decisive power games, motives and rhetoric that continue to shape Africa’s modern-day reality. A metaphor thus emerges for contemporary power dynamics. 

As part of 10x10, a collaboration between LOD music theatre and Arts Centre VIERNULVIER.


Part of


concept & direction Khalid Koujili El Yakoubi acting Marjan De Schutter, Rashif El Kaoui, Bjorn Floréal, Patricia Kargbo, Rachid Laachir and Lois Lumonga Brochez scenography, lighting & technology Gilles Polak costume Amber De Saeger music Han Stubbe dramaturgy Esther Severi writing coaching Dounia Mahammed co-presentation Compagnie Cecilia