PLANET KIGALI is a production of POLITICAL BODIES and the Rwandan Artist Initiative (RAI) together with KAMPNAGEL.


The Laboratories

Leading up to the premiere of their dance performance at Kampnagel Hamburg, the initiators of the project PLANET KIGALI invited Kigali based artists to join the dialogue. In cooperation with Goethe-Institut Kigali and supported by Rwanda Artists Initiative (RAI) the artists had the opportunity to participate in three laboratories: MAKING SPACES, TRANSFORMING SPACE & DESIGN ME DIFFERENT.

MAKING SPACES, facilitated by Berlin based artist Jelka Plate (Stage designer and visual artist), was based on 3D models as an artistic tool to visualize spaces. For three days artists with different backgrounds gathered to experiment in an open process to find out which possibilities models offer us to express utopian/dystopian visions.




TRANSFORMING SPACES was lead by the cast of PLANET KIGALI, who collectively started their artistic process to get to know each other. Working together for the first time the dancers and one actress from Kigali and Hamburg shared different approaches and techniques.

The fashion lab DESIGN ME DIFFERENT served as a dialogue and interactive exchange between emerging fashion designers, stylists and models lead by Beatrace Angut Oola (founder of Fashion Africa Now). During this three-day workshop, ideas, doubts, desires, and the question of words and aesthetics, as well as the new images of contemporary African Fashion, which appear and question us, were discussed.





Away from the past, into the future. Like no other African country, Rwanda is committed to looking ahead. The understanding of traditional culture in Rwanda is being radically reimagined, which is affecting the practice of contemporary artists. The Rwandan-German artist team of PLANET KIGALI fuses futuristic elements with Rwandan mythology to create a cosmos in which the future affects the present. In an artistic dialogue, a shared story is created that explores the depths of the past and paves the way for a new, fluid identity. Inspired by Rwandan traditions, the choreographer Yolanda Gutiérrez, the dramaturge Jens Dietrich and the director Dorcy Rugamba create images for a common future on the spaceship Earth. In the five tableaux of the piece, classical Rwandan and contemporary dance merge, an inconspicuous marginal figure transforms into a star, video snippets of the past seem like flashlights, Rwandan beats transform into body percussion, collective memories form into sequences of movement, and mythical cosmology strikes sci-fi fantasies.



How we see the world depends on what we remember. How we tell memories determines how we act. The dance performance PLANET KIGALI reverses the perspective: Six time travellers from the future end up in their past to explore our present. What traces has our time left in the future? The time travellers hold a retrospective on the stage, because in the post-identity society of the future many current assignments no longer play a role. What keeps a group together? How does the breakout from the group work? How are differences marked? Which common models of the past are groundbreaking? Stories from Rwanda and Germany, pictures from the past and future overlap. How we imagine the future is defined by the present. The effect precedes the origin.

Internationally acclaimed designer, Moshions, designed the costumes for the Rwandan-German ensemble. Also, burundi-born visual artist Chris Schwagga, whose collections reflect his social involvement and his love of glamour, developed a series of helmets for PLANET KIGALI that act as futuristic masks. On stage, designed by artist Jelka Plate, Minimal Art meets the Rwandan art form Imigongo, and the Hamburg sound artist Andi Otto remixes Soundscapes of Kigali with traditional music to hypnotic beats. In addition to the German dancers, one of the most famous Rwandan dancers, Wesley Ruzibiza, as well as Evariste Karingare who has been a member of the Rwandan ballet for over 40 years and the internationally acclaimed actress Eliane Umuhire, are on stage.

The performance will take place at Kampnagel during the 12th of Dec – 15th of Dec 2018 

Tickets: €18 / 12 (erm. from €9, [k]-Card from €6)

Programme here


Complementary Discussions:
Free Entrance

SHARING HERITAGE (12.12.2018 18:30)

In this country, knowledge of colonial history is particularly deficient and plays hardly any role in its curricula or collective memory. Germany’s »culture of memory«, which is often held up as a shining example of historical reappraisal, barely transmits any information about German colonial rule. For this reason, and in addition to the production PLANET KIGALI, Kampnagel presents a lecture and discussion about the past and current consequences of colonial rule in Rwanda. With: Nadja Ofuatey-Alazard, Millicents Adjei and Assumpta Mugiraneza, moderation by Dr.Noa K. Ha.


RWANDAN ARTS KLUB (13.12-15.12.2018 18.30)

A fine club atmosphere; a pop-up store; Rwandan art, music, fashion and film; visual impressions mixed with discourse and DJ programs. We may present: the RWANDAN ARTS KLUB. For three days, an emancipative space opens in the Kampnagel Club in which young actors from the Kigali arts scene discuss their work and visions for Rwanda. Leading up to the dance performance of the night PLANET KIGALI, Clémentine Dusabejambo (filmmaker), Nirere Shanel (musician) and Cedric Mizero (fashion designer) talk about the topics of society, culture and politics in the setting of a catwalk. Each session will be topped off by fine tunes served to you by Hamburg and Berlin-based DJs starting from 22:00.

Full programme here




ARTISTIC DIRECTORS: Dorcy Rugamba, Yolanda Gutiérrez, Jens Dietrich
DANCERS & PERFORMERS: Eliane Umuhire, Evariste Karinganire, Wesley Ruzibiza, Laura Böttinger, Frank Koenen
STAGE: Jelka Plate
HELMET ARTWORK: Chris Schwagga
MUSIC: Andi Otto
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Michel Patrick Mivumbi


A POLITICAL BODIES / RAI production together with KAMPNAGEL

The project is being supported by the TURN fund of the Federal Cultural Foundation, Goethe-Institut Kigali, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen & Hamburgische Kulturstiftung

About the Author

Fatou Camara is into sustainable and ethical fashion. Being both Senegalese and German, it is especially African designers and ‘Made in Africa’ brands she follows closely and enjoys writing about. She joined Fashion Africa Now as a freelance contributor in order to join the discussion and shape the narrative around Fashion in Africa today.