Raphaël Grisey, Kàddu Yaraax, Bouba Touré

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(Temporary Migrant)
27 Min

Traana is a theatre script written by Bouba Touré in 1977, one of the documents from his ongoing archive composed mainly of photographs, but also including writings such as diaries, notes or novel manuscripts.

The theatre script of Traana was written after Bouba Touré and 13 other members of the Cultural Association of African Workers in France decided to resettle back to West Africa. They settled along the Senegal river (a region typically experiencing massive emigration to the north), in order to promote a cooperative model and new forms of doing permaculture, the main source of income in the area, and to reconsider denied rural origins.

The play tells a story of rural exodus, from the countryside to the city, from the city to Europe. This story of migration from the 60’s and 70’s indexes the failure of the liberation movements in Senegal and Mali to consider the postcolonial conditions for peasants after independence.

Kàddu Yaraax means the Voice of Yaraax. Yaraax is one of the Lebou fishermen villages in Dakar that has historically been a place of resistance against the colonial regime and against the latest State and city politics. Many of the fishermen of Yaraax eventually became smugglers in the 90’s for the people who sought to migrate to Spain, using their navigation skills on their huge pirogues. The societies of the fishermen Lebou villages, and the rural Soninké region of the Senegal river are both societies connected with water, sharing the same stories of emigration and conflict with the colonial or more recent state authorities.

Traana, Temporary Migrant, a film by Raphaël Grisey and Kàddu Yaraax.

Kàddu Yaraax, the Theatre of the Oppressed company, exists since the 1990’s and organizes the international Kàddu Yaraax Theatre Forum festival since the 1990’s. Their work engages with issues of the day such as emigration, health, city development and ecology, with modes of address for speci c local communities. The principle of Theatre Forum is to play a scenario that is then given to over to discussion, interpretation, critique and transformation by an audience.

The adaptation of Traana by Kàddu Yaraax and Raphaël Grisey in December 2016, is the result of a ten-day workshop with 8 actors coming from Yaraax or other surburbs of Dakar. The actors learned and rehearsed the play in both Wolof and French. Each actor chose the language s/he felt most comfortable with, for their performance. Some songs or dances from Wolof rural origins were added. The decision was taken to include some notes from Bouba Touré about the theatre play, into the play itself.

The play was first staged in Gediwaye, a migrant worker neighborhood of Dakar, before conceiving of its possible outcome in a film.


Raphaël Grisey and Kaddu Yaraax

Language of Production

French, Wolof



Production Location

France, Senegal, Norway


  • Actor Káddu Yaraax: Mamekagne Diatta
  • Actor: Dame Hane
  • Actor: Yasmina Diop
  • Actor: Masseye Ndiaye
  • Actor: Meme Bassene
  • Actor: Cheikh Ndiaye
  • Actor: Moussa Kalamou
  • Actor: Pape Sidy Sy
  • Coordinators Káddu Yaraax: Diol Mamadou, Leity Kane
  • Pirogue driver: Fishermen of Yaraax

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