KLII exorcises the ghost of King Leopold II through a mytho-biographical performance by Kaneza Schaal and Christopher Myers. The performance draws on archival footage from Belgian filmmaker André Cauvin’s documentary Bwana Kitoko, mixing colonial aesthetics with traditional East African design. Building on Mark Twain’s King Leopold’s Soliloquy published in 1905, a fictional monologue written after Twain’s visit to Congo Free State and Patrice Lumumba’s 1960 independence speech in Congo, KLII considers the residue of colonialism in our everyday lives. Working with East African musicians and African American opera singers, the sound design investigates La Muette de Portici, the opera that ignited Belgium’s 1830 revolution. KLII explores the nature of evil and the simultaneous looking inward and looking outward required to unroot legacies of catastrophic events.

created & co-directed by Kaneza Schaal
designed & co-directed by Christopher Myers

sound by Camila Ortiz and Ian Andrew Askew

light by Itohan Edoloyi

dance consultanting by Jonathan Kubakundimana

recorded vocals by Kenita Miller and Ian Andrew Askew

technical direction by Cheyanne Williams

managing direction by Chelsea Goding

design support by James Gibbel

performed by Kaneza Schaal, Ian Andrew Askew, Sifiso Mabena, Cheyanne Williams, Jonathan Kubakundimana, and Kiara Benn

original lighting by Lucrecia Briceno, asst. Emmanuel Delgado

Walker Art Center, 2022
REDCAT, 2022
Under the Radar Festival at Chelsea Factory, 202

photos by Maria Baranova and Christopher Myers