Rooftop Hot Docs: When the Drum Is Beating
Documentary Feature
Thursday May 5, 2011
7:30PMDoors Open
SunsetFilm Begins



This Show Presented in Partnership With
Hot Docs
Open Roof Films

Rooftop's Partnership with the Hot Docs festival continues with award-winning director Whitney Dow's humane and truly exceptional rendering of Haiti’s pride, resistance, despair and rich artistic tradition.


When the Drum Is Beating (Whitney Dow | Haiti, USA | 85 min.)
In the northern Haitian city of Cap-Haïtien resides the country’s oldest and most beloved band, Orchestre Septentrional. Founded in 1948 by Ulrick Pierre Louis, this rotating mix of Haiti’s finest musicians has toured New York City, Toronto, Montreal and Paris, delivering a mélange of traditional voodoo music and Latin rhythms. It’s the ‘Haitian people’s band’ and it has outlasted all of the country’s political leaders. Yet this documentary is about more than the music. Since gaining independence and wealth in 1804, Haiti, the world’s first black republic, has become the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, one that yearns for a promising future. When the Drum Is Beating offers a deeper understanding into the survival of Haitian culture and Septentrional through the country’s turbulent history. Award-winning director Whitney Dow (Two Towns of Jasper) delivers a humane and truly exceptional rendering of Haiti’s pride, resistance, despair and rich artistic tradition. - Karina Rotenstein

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Rooftop Films is a New York based non-profit whose mission is to engage diverse communities by showing independent movies in outdoor locations, producing new films, coordinating youth media education, and renting equipment at low cost to artists.

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