Sosyete Koukouy: 50 Years of Bringing Haitian Culture to the World

SOUTH FLORIDA – Sosyete Koukouy, Inc. is an integral cultural and artistic organization for Haitians in South Florida and beyond. Established in 1985, Sosyete Koukouy has been dedicated to advancing Haitian culture in the United States through education, the arts, and cultural presentations for thirty years.

In honor of it’s upcoming 30th anniversary, Sa k ap fèt nan Ti Ayiti highlights this important and remarkable Haitian organization.

sosyete koukouySosyete Koukouy – house in Libreri Mapou in Little Haiti – tirelessly works to preserve, perpetuate, and present Haitian cultural performances and exhibitions to Creole and non-Creole speaking audiences. In support of this mission Sosyete Koukouy presents and produces cultural programs that: 1) increase awareness of Haitian people, its language, rituals and traditions, and its deep roots in the African continent; 2) foster greater understanding between Haitian people and people of other diverse ethnicities, cultures and heritage; and 3) foster respect for the arts and artists of Haiti and the Americas by raising awareness of their historical and artistic contributions to the national and
international cultural landscape.

As performers and presenters of Haitian folkloric and contemporary dance, music, theatre and literary arts, Sosyete Koukouy produces and presents its projects primarily in South Florida, though it has spun off six new companies located in Homestead, Canada, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Haiti. Tours and performances span
throughout the United States, Caribbean, Haiti and Canada, where high concentrations of Haitian people reside.

Sosyete Koukouy, moreover, is nationally recognized as an essential resource and repository of Haitian cultural information for anyone seeking information about Haitian culture, politics and language. It also advocates and supports the importance, potential, and impact of Haitian culture as a vehicle for social, cultural, economic development and empowerment of Haitian people for successful assimilation into American culture.

The organization, therefore, makes a concerted effort to target Haitian and Haitian-American people who are isolated in their own communities, by using familiar art forms to support cultural and acculturation services such as language skill development.

Sosyete Koukouy, Inc. also serves as an incubator company for other emerging Haitian artists and arts groups, providing opportunities for the mounting of new work or criticism for authenticity and clarification of little known or practiced traditions. Many of its members represent noted historians and archivists of Haitian culture and heritage,
contributing towards is reputation as the information center of Haitian culture and resources in the State of Florida. It is often said that, “inside Sosyete Koukouy beats the heart of Little Haiti.”

Sosyete Koukouy has been – and continues to be – the recipient of many, local, state, and international community, civic and artistic awards for its performances, academic conferences, and its dedication to the presentation and preservation of Haitian language and culture. The success of Sosyete Koukouy has been achieved under the
direction of Jan Mapou, the Artistic Director and Founder of Sosyete Koukouy in Miami. A published poet, playwright, and author himself, Jan Mapou and his Board of Directors have overseen and steered Sosyete Koukouy to not only reach the Haitian community, but broader South Florida as well through several strategic and important collaborations. Indeed, through these partnerships and collaborations, Sosyete Koukouy has been able to exponentially expand the numbers of people that they serve, increase their impact, and access community, educational, civic, and cultural resources they would not, otherwise be privy to.

Children's Storytelling with Lucrece  Louisdon at Haitian Caribbean Book Fair 2014
Children’s Storytelling with Lucrece Louisdon at Haitian Caribbean Book Fair 2014

In honor of their decades of success, as well as in recognition of their 30th anniversary, Sosyete Koukouy of Miami, Inc. will host its 3rd annual Haitian Caribbean Book Fair Saturday, May 23rd,2015 and Sunday, May 24th,2015. Collaborating with the City of Miami, Miami Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs, and Miami Knight Art Challenge, the event will highlight Haitian and Caribbean contributions to the literary world both here in Miami, and internationally. Saturday evening will play host to an intimate and inspiring lecture by an honored surprise guest, and performances from some of Sosyete Koukouy’s very own artists.

Sunday will welcome a book fair along NE 2nd Avenue between NE 59th Street and NE 59th Terrace, various literary and artistic workshops, and family fun for all! This event, in the heart of Little Haiti, and in the middle of Haitian Heritage Month, is sure to be a perfect birthday bash for Sosyete Koukouy, Inc., celebrating and honoring their contribution to Haitian arts and the Haitian community of South Florida these past thirty years.



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South Florida Caribbean News

The Team provides news and information for the Caribbean-American community in South Florida and beyond.

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