With festival “Dakar makes its comedy”, Senegal wants to become a “hub” of laughter in Africa

The third edition will see Senegalese humorists, but also French, Ivorians, Congolese or other countries of the sub-region.


Samba Kanté sees great. “The objective is that Dakar becomes the hub and the meeting of African humor,” said the producer of the Dakar festival makes his comedy which is held on Saturday May 14 at the Grand Théâtre de la Capitale Senegalese. The third edition of the event, organized after three years of arrest linked to the COVVI-19, will see Senegalese humorists parade, but also French, Ivorians, Congolese or other countries in the sub-region, in front of an audience of 1 800 spectators.

“The sketches will be in French, Wolof or Peul, it will be a real cocktail of humor to represent Africa and speak to everyone,” said Samba Kanté. The producer’s dream, based in France and which has notably collaborated with the French humorist Ahmed Sylla, is to radiate to the United States, and why not attract stars to Dakar like Eddie Murphy. “It is important to develop Senegalese humor which is sometimes a little closed with the local language, Wolof. It must therefore be opened to the French-speaking world or even English-speaking,” he continues.

Find new talents

With Dakar makes its comedy, Senegal intends to get to the level of the biggest festivals on the continent as Abidjan Capital of Laughter in Côte d’Ivoire or the Marrakech of Laughter in Morocco. “Senegal has infrastructure that can accommodate many spectators,” explains Samba Kanté, who hopes to find new talents and offer them the chance to perform on large stages.

This is the first time that the Senegalese Mame Balla Mbow will participate in an event of this magnitude, with his little brother Baye Saer Mbow, for a sketch of ten minutes. “This is an opportunity to show that we have an international level. And the fact of rubbing shoulders with Ivorian or Congolese artists allows us to improve and give us visibility,” explains the 32 -year -old humorist, who has Written his texts in Wolof with touches of French, and which shares his daily life between the Senegalese series, the humorous videos published on social networks and the preparation of his show which will be played in September in Paris.

Sheikh Abdou Doucouré, alias “Singom”, will go up for the second time on the Dakar scene made his comedy. “This festival is reunion and an atmosphere between humorists and African brothers and elsewhere. This allows us to advance our country and the humor in Senegal, also wants to believe the humorist and 22 -year -old actor who prepares in the greatest secrecy his show, between stand-up and musical. This gives openings and personal ties that can open to new markets. “

Call for the State

But the work is still long according to the young man, who calls on the State to stand more alongside the artists, by facilitating them in particular access to the rooms. Mame Balla Mbow also regrets a lack of means for the organization of tours inside Senegal and a lack of support for the procedures – obtaining visas, purchase of plane tickets – when it comes to going occur outside the country.

For Samba Kanté, the solution lies in the opening of cultural centers in all the major cities of Senegal in order to be able to organize concerts and shows. Because to reach a better level, you have to be able to train in front of an audience.

“We want the State to develop the network of cultural centers that could offer stand-up courses and writing workshops, but also that it supports young talents so that they can participate in festivals In Europe where the diaspora is very present, “claims the producer, who one day dreams of opening a cafe-theater in Dakar. “Senegalese can impose themselves and become big stars, because humor is part of their culture. They go through gestures and expressions to provoke laughter among spectators,” he said.

/Media reports.