The Other Side of Water: Journey of a Haitian Rara Band

About This Episode


The Other Side of the Water follows a 20-year journey of the Haitian-American community, told through the lens of a vodou-based walking band in Brooklyn. The music is called rara: part-carnival, part-vodou ceremony, and part-grassroots protest. Rara originally served as a voice of the slaves in their revolt against the French and continued on as the voice of those struggling against ongoing dictatorship in Haiti.

The documentary focuses on the journey of the poetic visionary Pé Yves, a leader of the rara movement in New York since the late ‘80s, as he strives to keep this musical art form alive while encountering attacks from the Haitian Christian community and new ideas from younger members of the rara movement.