Members of the Fanmi Asòtò lift their leader Sirene Dantor Sainvil.

Haitian cultural group Fanmi Asòtò teams up with NY’s Oldest House and Brooklyn Arts Council to bring an unprecedented festival celebrating the Lakou Souvenance tradition, including food, dancing, drumming, singing, and more.

The Festival Minokan takes place Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018 at the Wyckoff House Museum, from 2 to 6 pm. This festival will share the musical and culinary practices of the Lakou Souvenance lineage, which predates Haiti’s Independence in 1804. The festival will be officiated by preeminent Haitian songstress and Vodou Priestess Sirene Dantor, and is guided by her unique vision of preserving and sharing these long-standing traditions with American youth.

Adults and children of all backgrounds are invited to learn song and drum rhythms that evoke the spirits living in the natural world, and participate in traditions not often shared with public audiences. Dantor’s goal is to shine a light on the omnipresence of vodou, which is often misunderstood in Western culture. As she explains, “Vodou is how you live your life. It’s in the trees, it’s in the air, it’s in the water. It’s how you drink, how you eat, it’s how you respect yourself and each other. It doesn’t matter where you’re from. Vodou is life.”

All are invited to share in and learn about the sacred vodou celebration. For newcomers, we recommend arriving for the workshops at 2:30 pm, to learn the traditional songs and dance of this Lakou Souvenance tradition. At 4 pm, dancers from the Brooklyn-based Kriyol Dance! Collective will perform and lead audience members in traditional Haitian dances. The festivities will conclude with a set by Dantor’s band, Fanmi Asòtò, leading up to the final Dahomey Souvenance Lakou, a traditional rhythmic invocation of the natural spirits. Traditional Haitian food and beverages will be available for purchase.

Ticket: $10 adults / $5 Children online; $20 adults / $10 Children at the door

Date / Time: Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018, 2-6 pm

Address: The Wyckoff House Museum, 5816 Clarendon Rd., Brooklyn, NY 11203

Website: wyckoffmueum.org/calendar/minkoan

Contact: Melissa Branfman, melis[email protected]ckoffmuseum.org, 718-629-5400

Festival Minokan is supported, in part by Fanmi Asòtò, Wyckoff House Museum, and the Brooklyn Arts Council.

Christopher Mulé

More from Around NYC