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Entertainment

The principal entertainment that we will address in this section are Movies and comedies. There are many talent Haitian individuals performing in there areas. Some of them have reached the international level

Raoul Peck's Fatal Assistance Compared to Nazi Tactics by Sean Penn

Raoul Peck (born 1953, Port-au-Prince, Haiti) is a Haitian award winneing filmmaker who fled the Duvalier dictatorship with his two younger brothers and joined his father in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo when he was only 8 years old. Before studying industrial engineering and economics at Berlin's Humboldt University, he attended schools in the DRC (Kinshasa), in the United States (Brooklyn). He earned a baccalaureate in France (Orléans). His recent film 'Fatal Assistance' (Assistance Mortelle) released last year, highlights the colossal aid failure in Haiti's reconstruction. This documentary tries to find out how, in spite of many international community's promises, the needs of ten million Haitians ended in a paltry fashion.

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Stones in the Sun, a film written and directed by Patricia Benoit

Writer and director Patricia Benoit has released "Stones in the Sun", chosen by the New York Times as a Critics' Pick. Set in the late 1980s in New York the film traces the stories of several Haitian exiles that have fled Haiti after Jean-Claude Duvalier's rule, continued in his absence through his military power structure.

The film asks questions like: how does one start or continue a life? Is it better to sever ties with the past or remain loyal to your roots?

Micheline has chosen to Europeanize herself as a Frenchwoman in the U.S. after her husband is killed in Haiti. She lives a comfortable lifestyle as a Realtor, but when elder daughter Yannick shows up it's a what-will-the-neighbors-think conflict between the two, for Yannick is a political activist and teacher, loyal to her Haitian heritage.

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New Orleans Mardi Gras better than Haiti Carnival

The first official Mardi Gras parade was held in New Orleans on Feb. 24, 1857 by the Krewe of Comus. However, it started on the streets of New Orleans much earlier from the late 1830's with street processions of maskers with carriages and horseback riders to celebrate Mardi Gras. Since then over 1,800 Mardi Gras parades have been staged in metro New Orleans and the festivities have grown into one of the world's grandest tourist attractions. The season of merriment begins in New Orleans each year on January 6. The traditional colors of the New Orleans Mardi Gras are purple, green, and gold with their meanings justice, faith and power respectively. It is illegal to ride on a Mardi Gras parade float in New Orleans without wearing a mask.

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Haiti Mardi Gras facts

"Mardi Gras" or "Fat Tuesday" (in French), has its origins in medieval Europe that dates back thousands of years to pagan celebrations of spring and fertility, including the raucous Roman festivals of Saturnalia and Lupercalia.

The festival marks the last day before Catholics begin Lent on Ash Wednesday. It is a holiday which is celebrated around the world by people of various beliefs because it focuses on having a good time and enjoying food and drink. It has many international names, such as Martes de Carnaval in Mexico, Martedi Grasso in Italy, Fastan in Sweden, J'Ouvert in Trinidad, and Karneval in Germany. The Mardi Gras has five popular traditions. Here their meanings are explained. (1) Wearing masks (it hides class constraints); (2) The Flambeaux Tradition (in the beginning shredded rope soaked in pitch were carried by the slaves so that the nighttime revelers could enjoy festivities); (3) Throwing Of Beads (color chosen by the king was thrown to the person who exhibited the meaning of the color like justice, power or faith); (4) Rex, The King of Carnival (a prominent person is chosen) and (5) Handing Out Zulu Coconuts (a favorite Mardi Gras throw, considered priceless).

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Carnival History, Kanaval

Hundreds and hundreds of years ago, the Catholics in Italy started the tradition of holding a wild costume festival right before the first day of Lent. In the olden days, Catholics were not supposed to eat meat during Lent and they called their festival, "carnevale" -- which means "to put away the meat." Gradually this practice became popular and the practice spread to France, Spain, and all the Catholic countries in Europe. With the European colonial powers or where the European Catholics entered into the slave trade, the carnival took root and thus the practice came to the Americas and other parts of the world. Important to Caribbean and Haitian festivals are the practice of African traditions where people parade and move in circles through villages in costumes and masks, because they believe circling the village bring good fortune, heal problems, chill out angry relatives who had died and passed into the next world. They use the feathers on masks and headdresses as a symbol of ability to overcome problems, illness, pains, heartbreaks, to grow spiritually and reborn to a new better life. Their drums and music traditions have also transformed the early carnival celebrations in the Americas.

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Haiti National Carnival 2015, "Nou tout se Ayiti"

On Sunday, 15 February, 2015, President Martelly had inaugurated the National Carnival 2015 on the theme "Nou tout se Ayiti" (or "We are Haitians") at the National Palace. In the last three years, the national carnival had been held in three provincial cities: Cayes (2012), in Cap-Haitien (2013) and Gonaïves (2014).

During the occasion, Dithny Joan Raton, the Haitian Minister of Culture and the Honorary President of the National Carnival Committee, had expressed his satisfaction over the preparation for the 3-day celebration during from February 15 to 17. Sixteen musical groups and 125 disguised bands took part in the parade.

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Haiti Carnival Floats

Mardi Gras' or 'Fat Tuesday' is a Christian holiday and a popular cultural festival which is celebrated on the day before the religious season of Lent that begins on Ash Wednesday. It also has links to the Christmas season through the period known as Carnival. The festival is celebrated in many countries dominated by the Roman Catholic populations. Parades are a major part of celebrating Mardi Gras since the day when the 'krewes' began parading through New Orleans over 100 years ago. The crude early floats during the mid 1800's were often accompanied by young slaves, and free men of color (known as flambeaux carriers) who carried torches to light the way for floats and bands during Mardi Gras night parades. 'Krewes' are the groups with hereditary membership whose members organize and participate as costumed paraders in the annual Mardi Gras carnival. Each Mardi Gras Parade Krewe has a unique history and theme. This most famous public festivity draws thousands of tourists and revelers every year. Popular practices on Mardi Gras include costumes and wearing masks, dancing, overturning social conventions, sports competitions, parades, debauchery, etc. The first official Mardi Gras parade celebrated in the U.S was at Mobile, Alabama in 1703 under the French rule. The true origins of Mardi Gras can be traced all the way back to ancient Greece and Rome, and along with Christianity, Mardi Gras spread from Rome to other countries such as Brazil, New Orleans, Venice, Colombia, Trinidad and Tobago, Mexico, and Canada.

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Barikad Crew Electrocuted in Kanaval, Phantom in Critical Condition

Following a major accident on the second day of Kanaval in Port-au-Prince, on February 17, 2015, 17 people died and at least 60 were injured of stampede in an ensuing panic by the bystanders. According to the news agency report, when float of the Barikad Crew was passing through on Rue Capois near the Champ de Mars, the star rappers of the Barikad group, known as Phantom, was reported to be the one who first received the electric charge.

He was standing on the float and removed a high tension power line with a pole so that their float can pass under it. Some of the victims were immediately electrocuted in a flash of sparks. Most of those killed appeared to have been trampled to death as the crowd surged away from the Carnival float. However, Phantom was in stable condition; the physicians were surprised that the singer didn't suffer a heart attack or die after coming in contact with the power line.

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The festival of Mardi Gras in Haiti

Carnival in Haiti is the most popular festival that unites an explosion of music, food, dance and costume. The festival originated with Italian Catholics in Europe, later spread to the French and Spanish, who brought the pre-Lenten tradition when they settled (and brought slaves to) Haiti, Trinidad, Dominica, Martinique, and other islands. The word Carnival itself means "farewell to the flesh," that refers to the former Catholic practice of abstaining from red meat from Ash Wednesday until Easter.

The Caribbean's carnivals all have several common themes, many were originated from Trinidad and Tobago Carnival because it is believed that the first "modern" Caribbean Carnival was originated in Trinidad and Tobago in the late 18th century, when French émigrés brought the Masquerade tradition with them, although the celebrations of 'Fat Tuesday' were taking place at least a century ago. The popular practices of Mardi Gras costume include wearing masks, capuchons, and costumes, drinking alcohol, dancing, overturning social conventions, feasting, begging, whipping, etc.

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Does Haiti have better Mardi Gras Costumes

The traditional Mardi Gras ball is a lavish affair, calling for floor-length gowns for women and tuxedos for men. For the parades leading up to Mardi Gras, it's casual, comfortable attire. Nobody attends the Mardi Gras celebration in a simple way. It is a celebration of eating richer, fatty foods, preceding the fasting season of Lent. The Celebrations vary from city to city. Mardi Gras celebrations feature masks, costumes, beads, debauchery, and letting your inhibitions go. Children dress in fairies, butterflies, clowns, princess or as their superhero. Men's Mardi Gras costumes include court jesters, gladiators, crawfish and many others. The more outlandish is the costume, it is better. However, some partygoers tend to tone things down by wearing more subtle costumes in the Mardi Gras colors of purple, turquoise, and gold.

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