Rara

(redirected from Ra-Ra)

Rara (Ra-Ra)

February-April; weekends in Lent
In Haiti the celebration of Carnival is known as Rara for the groups of people who come down from the hills to dance in processions on the weekends throughout Lent and particularly during Easter week. It begins by calling on Legba, who appears as Carrefour, the guardian of thresholds and crossroads.
Each Rara band consists of a musical group, a band chief, a queen with attendants, a women's choir, and vendors selling food. The group's leader often dresses like a jester and twirls a long baton known as a jonc . On Shrove Tuesday night, the Rara bands perform a Bruler Carnival in which they carry out the ritual burning of various carnival objects then make a cross on their forehead with the ashes. Rara has deep ties with Voodoo and its resemblance to other Carnival celebrations is largely superficial.
See also Carnival Lamayote
CONTACTS:
Embassy of the Republic of Haiti
2311 Massachusetts Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
202-332-4090; fax: 202-745-7215
www.haiti.org
SOURCES:
BkHolWrld-1986, Apr 9
FestWrld: Haiti-1999, p. 11
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 139
RelHolCal-2004, p. 284
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