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for the benefit of
Christoph Schlingensief’s
Opera Village Africa
On 29 July at 7 pm on


Registration on this website
starts on 8 July 2021



Aino Laberenz
Nils Philipp Dommert
Annika Turkowski



Stiftung Operndorf Afrika
Fehrbelliner Str. 56
10119 Berlin
Tel: +49 30 40 04 59 42


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THE GRAND OPERA AUCTION SHOW is an online charity auction for the benefit of Christoph Schlingensief’s Opera Village Africa. On July 29, 2021, at 7pm, 24 works by 23 artists will be put up for auction by auctioneer Kilian von Seldeneck.


During the auction, there will also be the opportunity to donate via telephone line for the purposes of the Operndorf Afrika Foundation. The proceeds will be used primarily to expand the cultural program in the Opera Village Africa and secure it for the coming years.


THE OPERA VILLAGE AFRICA is an international art project that has been taking shape in Burkina Faso/West Africa since 2009 and is based on the idea of the German artist Christoph Schlingensief (1960 – 2010). Schlingensief’s wish to create a place of international encounters – artistic as well as cultural – was connected with the official foundation. Since then, under the motto “Learning from Africa,” a platform for intercultural exchange programs and postcolonial discourse has manifested itself about 30 kilometers away from Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, making visible a new and, in particular, differentiated image of Africa, which distinguishes the project from many others in classical development cooperation.
Christoph Schlingensief imagined a place that would make the cultural potential of a society in Africa fruitful for his own work. The basic idea of the opera village is an unconditional exchange of cultures. In Schlingensief’s words, it is time to enrich the “descending European high culture with the ascending African civilization” and to invest in Africa.


To date, 26 buildings have been erected on the site provided by the Burkinabe government, including an elementary school for some 300 schoolgirls, a maternity and infirmary, a canteen, guest houses, offices, and a recording studio and film screening room. Regular educational and cultural offerings, such as literacy courses and workshops, complement the project’s main objective: exchange between African and European artists, which manifests itself in an annual artist-in-residence program that has been running since 2015. In 2019, the cultural offer was expanded to include a children’s film festival, which is held every spring for children and young people of the region.


Under the management of Aino Laberenz (since 2010), all construction projects, cultural projects and their financing are coordinated by Festspielhaus Afrika gemeinnützige GmbH, founded by Schlingensief in 2009 and based in Berlin. Since 2011, the project has been under the patronage of former German President Horst Köhler. In December 2012, the non-profit Operndorf Afrika foundation was also established. The operating units school and infirmary are already supported by the government of Burkina Faso. The administration and projects of Festspielhaus Afrika gGmbH are financed by private donations and public funding. A challenge is the maintenance costs as well as the promotion of self-sufficiency through agriculture and renewable energies, which should guarantee the independence of the project in the long term.