The Golden Stool or the story of Nana Yaa Asantewaa

or the story of Nana Yaa Asantewaa

Toneelhuis, LOD muziektheater, Gorges Ocloo

Who is Nana Yaa Asantewaa? Why was she important? And what is her legacy? 

Around 1900, she led the resistance against the troops of the British Monarch as an old woman and, together with the women's brigade she formed, held out for a year in the war for the Golden Stool, the throne and pride of the Asante people in Ghana. 

The British had been slaughtering the Asante to gain access to timber, gold and cocoa for years. The industrial revolution in faraway England required resources, many resources, like a hungry beast. For Nana Yaa Asantewaa and her women, the British Monarch’s claiming of the Golden Stool was the last straw. The Golden Stool would not leave the country! 

Nobulumko Mngxekeza-Nziramasanga (soprano), Nonkululeko Nkwinti (mezzo-soprano), Doris Bokongo Nkumu, Nathalie Bokongo Nkumu, Abena Biney Gloria, Titilayo Oliha, Saar-Niragire De Groof, Briana Stuart, Maïmouna Badjie and Somalia Williamson sing, act and dance the story of Nana Yaa Asantewaa and her courageous struggle, to the sounds of famous arias from the classical Western opera repertoire – which Gorges Ocloo has appropriated for the occasion. Handel, Bizet, Shostakovich, Verdi, Vivaldi, Beethoven, Orff... they all pass in revue. With this AfrOpera, Gorges Ocloo reveals his roots.

concept, direction, libretto, composition & costumes

  • Gorges Ocloo


  • Nobulumko Mngxekeza-Nziramasanga


  • Nonkululeko Nkwinti

choir, dance, percussion

  • Doris Bokongo Nkumu
  • Nathalie Bokongo Nkumu
  • Gloria Abena Biney
  • Titilayo Oliha
  • Saar-Niragire De Groof
  • Briana Stuart
  • Maïmouna Badjie
  • Somalia Williamson

advice composition & choir master

  • Joris Minten


  • Josse De Pauw


  • Josse De Pauw

musical advice

  • Katherina Lindekens

directing assistance

  • Chiara Monteverde

realization costumes

  • Kasia Mielczarek
  • atelier toneelhuis

production management

  • Eva De Wolf
  • Noor De Graaf


  • Toneelhuis
  • LOD muziektheater


  • Opera Ballet Vlaanderen
  • O. Festival Rotterdam

with the support of

  • enoa & the Creative Europe Programme
  • de Tax Shelter van de Belgische federale overheid

thanks to

  • Lukas Vanhoutte
  • Naomi Lampariello
  • Peter King
  • Wilhelmina Donkoh
  • The Queen Mother of Ejisu
  • The Women Commission Office of the Koforidua Technical University

All data

  1. Thursday 27 April 2023 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen Premiere
  2. Friday 28 April 2023 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  3. Saturday 29 April 2023 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  4. Sunday 30 April 2023 — 15h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen Audio description
  5. Friday 5 May 2023 — 20h00 — VIERNULVIER/Theaterzaal, Gent
  6. Wednesday 17 May 2023 — 20h00 — O., Rotterdam

News about ‘The Golden Stool or the story of Nana Yaa Asantewaa’

Gorges Ocloo calls for a repertoire that starts from the bottom up Article • 24 June 2022

Gorges Ocloo calls for a repertoire that starts from the bottom up

‘Actions, not only words’ – that was the motto of his school in Ghana, and theatre maker Gorges Ocloo (b. 1988) still lives by it. His shows are colourful extravaganzas of visuals, movement and music, with a strong political undertone. He wipes his feet on the classical repertoire. Meet a director who plans to take the Bourla by storm with new metaphors.


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