The Kennedy Center

Germaine Acogny


Senegalese and French, she founded her first dance studio in Dakar in 1968, thanks to the influence of the dances she had inherited from her grandmother, a Yoruba priest, and to her studies of traditional African dances and Occidental dances (classic, modern) in Paris and New York.

Between 1977 and 1982 she was artistic director of Mudra Afrique (Dakar), created by Maurice Béjart and the senegalese president and poet Leopold Sedar Senghor. In 1980, she wrote her first book untitled “African Dance”, edited in three languages.

Once Mudra Afrique had closed, she moved to Brussels to work with Maurice Béjart’s company, she organised international African dance workshops, which showed a great success among the European audience. This same experience was repeated in Africa, in Fanghoumé, a small village in Casamance, the south of Senegal. People from Europe and from all over the world travelled to this place.

Germaine Acogny dances, choreographs and teaches on all continents, she has become an emissary of the African Dance and Culture. In 1985, together with her husband she set up the “Studio-Ecole-Ballet-Théâtre du 3è Monde” and then later, after her return to Senegal she the ECOLE DES SABLES, International Center for Traditional and Contemporary African Dances. It is a place for professional education, a forum of exchange and a meeting place for dancers from Africa and across the world.

In 2005 she was invited as regent at UCLA (University of Los Angeles).
Germaine Acogny