Katherine Dunham at home in Martissant,Haiti(1962)

Uploaded by haitianhistory on 25.06.2010

you've never seen these two names side by side,Leclerc and Dunham
General Leclerc, husband of Pauline Bonaparte was sent to Haiti by Naporleon Bonaparte to dampened a revolt
legend has it that Pauline woke up and found herself at the bougainvillea of this residence in Port-au-Prince
it's here that we found Katherine Dunham
a dancer, she prepare for her upcoming American and European tour
as she installed herself at Pauline's
grouped at the old Leclerc stay, a luxurious residence.
with her daughter and a few dancers
the ones who popularized the Haitian dance and vodou
search for new rhythms
when did you come here for the first time, to Port-au-Prince?
first time in Port-au-Prince was..... let me see-------its been 26 years.I was a student at the university of Chicago.
you are American?
you are American
so you are American
Haiti for us in France, before everything is the vodou. Does it exist,the vodou?
Oh yes, it exist-------it exist....... I think that Haiti without vodou wouldn't be Haiti.
can an outsider assist at a vodou ceremony, a real vodou ceremony?
it's difficult,an outsider can see the dances; dances express for joy and the dances for the gods,but the true ceremonies take place in a sort of temple a house of straws they call an ounfo
and that's for the initiated
I've been initiated
you've been initiated
you practice?
practicing I can't say, I want to see. I'm no longer occupy by the secrets of vodou,but I'm absolutely taking by the dances.there is always a variation, always something new.
is there sorcerers on the countryside?
Oh yes.... yes
it depends on what you mean by sorcerer,there are people that can help you with what you want,if its good.Black sorcerers(black magic) I don't know about that.
you never call up on sorcerers?
no,no..... not black sorcerers(black magic).sometimes I tell my neighbors who are sorcerers or oungans(vodou priest) that I'm having some tourists over tonight, they do a little something-------whatever.......