Musician Eric Acakpo and dance-artist Francesca Pedullà have worked together since 2004, teaching, creating contexts for cultural and artistic exchange and performing in Benin and abroad. Confronted both personally and professionally by the benefits and the challenges of being in a dialogue besides cultural differences and unconscious bias, they committed to focusing their work on exploring how such dialogue can be mutually enriching and transformative.

Sonagnon was founded in 2006 to pursue their work and research among collectivities. It provides an exchange and learning platform for artists.

We work inclusively with local communities and test the impact that the encounter between different forms of art and different cultures have on each of us.





Every year (2008-2012)  D.I. carried out  creative residencies, workshops for dancers and professional musicians, concerts, exhibitions and socio-cultural activities open to the public.Dialogues Inévitables (D.I.) brought together dance artists, musicians, visual artists, academics, associations, cultural agents  and venues from different countries, all engaged and dedicated  to the research on the phenomenon of intercultural dialogue


In its first phase, DI  project resulted in the production of the show Dialogues Inévitables XL: with 25 artists on stage, the show was presented at  the tenth edition of the FITHEB (International Festival of Théâtre au Bénin) in March 2010.

Subsequently (August- September 2010) DI  took place at the Cultural Center Cité Culture in the popular district of Cité Model, in Brussels, in collaboration with the Belgian cultural association Zazimut. On this edition, DI  provided a choreographic residency for the production of the dance theater, live music and mixed media performance Du Mythe  du Dieu Argent. which was  presented  in its  final version  HTroisC L (Lussemburgo) (2011),  in Teatro Archivolto (Genova), Festival  Biennale Passage 012 (Bielefeld),  Haus of the Berliner Festspiele (Berlin) (2012).

Dialogues Inévitables

Dialogues Inévitables

D.I .was founded on the desire to create new contexts for individual and cultural encounter and exchange, to favor artistic endeavor as an expression of the power of collective reflection and elaboration, and to enable the recognition of “dialogue” as the indispensable instrument of survival for contemporary society. 

The work has focused on the “global engine” of consumption,  a common cultural denominator that nullifies or highlights the differences in gender, race, class and nationality,  a  regulator of interpersonal relations, as well as a generator of coping mechanisms for individuals and communities


Atypical Stopover

Inevitables Dialogues- Atypical Stopover

The  experience at Cité Culture started a new phase of the project : Inevitables Dialogues- Atypical Stopover.

Traveling in Europe and Africa, the staff of D.I. and other guests artists were hosted in several different cities to organize and animate the “atypical stopover events” that by relating different cultural realities and venues instigated artistic and theoretical research laboratories, as well as sponsor socio-cultural activities with the aspiration to provide a context to investigate and share thoughts on the complex relationship between Africa and Europe, between the “North” and “South” of the world. 



Over a 5 year journey, D\i worked with 30 artists,  mainly West Africans , and created a platform for young professionals – dance artists, musicians and visual artists to access training and education and to learn from each other.  DI delivered to participants a unique experience of working and  living  with local communities overseas, comparing different lifestyles and coping with social values and norms.




Initiated by the Association Sonagnon in 2005, D.I. achieved a greater amplitude and scope through the dedicated curation of three supporting associations: Association CQB/Genova – Italy, Créations Entrelacées/Paris – France and Sonagnon/Ouidah- Benin as well as numerous European and African partners:  Wallonie Bruxelles, Organisation Intl de la Francophonie,  Aktion Africa- German Foreign Affairs;  Cité Culture, Zazimut Association,  L’Horologe du Sud – Brussels; Trois CL Luxembourg,  Teatro dell’Archivolto ; Teatro della Tosse, Conservatorio Niccolò Paganini, Fondazione Palazzo Ducale,  FNAC –  Genova,  AfricaAvenir Intl., Tanzfabrik Berlin


God Money

This work recounts one of the possible versions of the story of the God

Money. (…) Sent to Earth to facilitate exchanges among human beings,

Money takes pleasure in playing with their weaknesses and, taking control

of their will, he will become increasingly more powerful (…)1.

The show

Using an ironic and symbolic language, this story leads us into an imaginary but familiar universe. The piece makes use of the allegorical power of myth to celebrate humanity, without illusions, without shame, recognizing that man can be as brilliant and sensitive as he can be mean and vulgar. The music, giving voice to the dancers, describes the story, and inscribes it in time and space




The piece was born of a collaboration between Italian dancer/ choreographer Francesca Pedullà, and the musician Eric Acakpo of Benin, as well as several artists from different countries: Benin, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Senegal.  The result of this concerted collaboration is a work of performable art that converges and merges the languages of dance and contemporary music with the traditional West African cultural heritage, and translates them into a new dialect. Common and specific individual differences are not discounted here, but are integrated, studied and enhanced at the service of a pertinent message.



Press Selection

“The audience received “The Myth of the God Money” with excitement.

Artists originating from Benin, Canada, France, Italy and Senegal

produced a gripping performance in which various artistic languages

translate into a message that prompts us to reflect on modern society.”

Serena Massolo, La Repubblica 02/2012


“An ecstasy of bodies which roll, jostle and chase each other as if the

iciness of the medium could never tone down the disorder and unbridled

movement of the pursuit of money, which is our only collective language.

Costumes pile up on the stage, put on in a hurry for a photo shoot,

clothes which don’t really cover up the body and can never provide

warmth… Clothes which, in Africa just as in Europe, only strengthen

our unlimited vanity. (…) There are many interpretations of the work by

Francesca Pedulla, Eric Acakpo and Davide Francesca which show

how art can become the most powerful method of cultural mediation, in

which every symbolic gesture carries with it the history of the countries

from which this project originates or which it has crossed, from Benin to

Genoa to Berlin and on.” Judith Sthrom Africa Avenir 12/2012



Press Selection


“Consumer behavior separates the rich and the poor because it creates

social inequalities, but it unites them in a common systemic context

despite the variation in life-styles that finances dictate. The group

“Dialogues In vitables” chose this paradox as an artistic departure point,

with the intention of building bridges between Europe and Africa … The

performance “The Myth of the God Money” uses the communicative

power of symbol and the evocative format of the myth to recount

humanity’s history with all its greatness and corruption. Contemporary

western African dance and music combine and set the focus on the

strength of the themes and their suggestive power.”

Diego Curcio, CORRIERE MERCANTILE, 11/02/2012


”… inspired by classical Greek and traditional African mythology has

inspired the creation of a modern fairy tale in which every man and

woman independent of their family background becomes a slave to the

god Money. … “The Myth of the God Money” celebrates the brilliant and

sensitive power of humanity in an explosion of dance, music and theatre,

but also shows how narrow-minded and vulgar it can be.”

Simona Griggio, IL SECOLOXIX, 09/02/2012



Directed by: Francesca Pedulla and Davide Francesca

Original Music: Eric Acakpo, Anicet Aymonde Gildas, Lorenzo Gasperoni

Choreography: Francesca Pedulla and Group Work

Cast: Richard Adossou, Kelly Keenan,  Roberta Messa, Papis N’Doye, Sara Parisi,  Francesca Pedulla, Medard Sossa, Sara Tassara

Musicians: Eric Acakpo, Anicet Gildas Aymonde, Aliou Guessere

Lighting Design: Luciano Novelli   ; 

VJ: Antoine Renouard

Costumes: Davide Francesca  

Sculpture: Davide dall’Osso

Photo: Laura Milone, Adrien Michel