• Wednesday, 29 May, 2024 - 20:30
  • Thursday, 30 May, 2024 - 20:30
  • Friday, 31 May, 2024 - 20:30
  • Saturday, 1 June, 2024 - 20:30


Location: Mercerie. 70 Rue Van Artevelde – 1000 Brussels

Missa Utica

Sammy Baloji

© Joachim Ngoi et Les Troubadours du Roi Baudouin, Missa Luba © Philips, 1958

The first Black bishop to be appointed by the Catholic Church was supposed to settle in Utica, Tunisia but never reached his final destination. His story was the inspiration for Sammy Baloji’s new performance. Missa Utica retraces the priest’s journey and explores the history of the Kongo Kingdom in the 15th century and the evangelisation of Africa. We witness the initial contact and first diplomatic exchanges, alliances built and broken. The strategic stakes of the colonies and slavery unfold before us, showing how Africa's colonial past clashes with current political and economic realities.


The form takes inspiration in Missa Luba, a Latin mass developed by a 20th century Belgian missionary, which employs traditional Congolese chants. This music is reinterpreted by Barbara Drazkov and Pytshens Kambilo, becoming a dialogue between classical European music and Congolese rumba. Actress Bwanga Pilipili performs this narrative composed of several tableaux imagining a mass full of iconography of great Congolese heroines and heroes. Under the impressive glass roof of the Mercerie and on a large carpet woven in Tunisia, Baloji reconnects disparate territories and histories across pre- and post-colonial eras.

Il n'y a pas d'événements prévu pour ce mois.