Creation 2022

60 minutes

Fleeing on a path strewn with pitfalls, a group inexorably moves forward, united against the threat of imminent danger. On the stage, the five performers form a cohesive body, confronting uncertainty as they explore the gestures of cooperation and mutual aid, and of rivalry and fantasies.

Between tangible physical actions and abstract sound and graphic landscapes, bodies appear to be sucked into a fragmented space-time. They multiply their efforts to reconstruct their environment so as to break free from it.

Shantala Pèpe explores a choreographic, pictorial, and sound narrative about migration and mutual aid, as she navigates between realism and dreamlike reality.


Since immemorial time, men migrate, leave their native land to go to the unknown, driven by the desire for a better life, and often at the risk of their lives. In the face of danger, how do bodies unite and move?

This is the question that the piece ask without answering it. Through a group of five women and men projected in a hostile and coercive imaginary environment, it is here the desire to confront the notion of danger with that of mutual aid and solidarity that interests me, drawing in particular from the study book Mutual Aid by Pierre Kropotkine, and the meta-analysis Mutual aid, the other law of the jungle by Pablo Servigne and Gauthier Chapelle.

Through a universal and timeless narrative on migration and exile, we explores with RAFALES the power and strength of the group, in a language that combines dance, physical theatre and visual images.


Choreographic Prize 2022 of the SACD (the Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers)

> Interview from Isabelle Plumhans

"On stage, under a cold subdued blue light, a shadow, then another wander on the alert in a space with cavernous resonances. Soon, there are five of them. They are lost. Everyone throws himself, is mistaken in certainty and then goes back to the unknown. Little by little, they recognize themselves in their search for land and unite for a crossing more than uncertain. They’re tossed by the waves, blown over by the wind, but they’re welded together. So no one goes down. Struck by a shipwreck off the coast of Lampedusa in 2019, Shantala Pèpe began an extensive historical and visual research that will serve as a starting point for a creation made in complicity with the dancers of the MANA Company. The allusion to migration is omnipresent both in the direction and in the bodies, their movements, their arrangements. But far from taking a stand against injustice, Rafales is a danced metanarrative where humans, driven by forces greater than themselves, bind to each other and find their foothold."

Catherine Montondo, member of the Belgium comity of the SACD.


Artistic direction and Choreography Shantala Pèpe
Creation and Performance Marion Bosetti, François Brice, Louis Nam Le Van Ho, Nadir Louatib, Frauke Mariën (many thanks to Vincent Clavaguera-Pratx)
Dramaturgical overlook
Sara Lemaire
Musical Composition Thomas Turine
Lighting and Set Design Hugues Girard
Costumes Patricia Eggerickx
Costume making
Isabelle Airaud
Setting in Voice Sarah Klenes
Accompaniment to the production and diffusion
Claude Véron

Production MANA Company
Coproductions Les Brigittines - Playhouse for Movement, Le Phare - National Choreographic Center of Le Havre Normandie / direction Fouad Boussouf, as part of Accueil-Studio.
Wallonia-Brussels Federation - dance service, Mossoux-Bonté Company, Cultural Center Jacques Franck, Theatre Les Tanneurs, SACD Belgium, ICI Bruxelles, LookIN'OUT (theatre 140, Le BAMP, Ad Lib), Wallonia Brussels Theatre Dance

Photos©Aurélie Leporq & Aurélien Bihr


6 to 10 December 2022 Les Brigittines - Playhouse for Movement, Brussels, BE

6 October 2022 Théâtre Les Tanneurs - Ici Bruxelles // Focus Pro

26 November 2021 Theatre 140 - Professional Platform LookIN'OUT, Brussels, BE

12 May 2021 Work in progress for professionals - Les Brigittines, Brussels, BE