About the Piece

“Koze Dantan” which is a Haitian Title that means “Old Time Stories”, is a reminiscence of some habits in Haiti where in the old days families would hangout at night and the older would tell stories to the young. Those stories would vary from horror stories, to war stories, love stories, to funny stories; in summary it was stories about how their time differed from what we were living in. Which was a way to keep the memories from the past alive, and also for us the next generation to learn from the more experiences and move towards a better future.

This composition is based on a Haitian Rhythm called “Yanvalou”. Yanvalou is a Rhythm and Dance of Haiti, named after its associated movements. Yanvalou is one of the most important rhythms in Haitian folklore, it is sometimes linked to “Knowledge”, “Patience”, “Strength” and “Healing”. usually played on Three different congas named “Manman (mother)”, “Segon (second)” and “Kata” the latter being always played with sticks on the body of a conga; or on one Conga playing a combination or summary of all those 3 instruments. The beat of the rhythm of Yanvalou is a combination ofTriple-Duple time (1-2-3 |1 2) in this composition with 3 eighth-notes forming the triple and 2 dotted eighth-notes (or eighth-notes Duplet) for the duple. [Program notes by the composer]


Violin I
Violin II

A perusal score is available to view on the composer’s website:


About the Composer

A native of Port-au-Prince Haiti, Christopher attended Holy Trinity Music School where he learned voice, violin, and piano. Christopher became a member of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Holy Trinity in 2007 and conducted their main choir “Les Petits Chanteurs” for three years beginning in 2011. He was a Blume Haiti Scholar in the Haitian student exchange program at Lawrence University in 2015, and in 2017 he joined Silver Lake College of the Holy Family to get a Bachelor in Choral in Music Education. Christopher was the Winner of the WCDA Conducting Competition in 2018. He has also composed vocal and instrumental pieces that have been performed by various groups, most notably Petits Chanteurs and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Holy Trinity Music School, the Lawrence University Cello Ensemble, and the Silver Lake College of the Holy Family Chorale. Christopher sings baritone, in addition to play piano and violin.

Website: www.christopherducasse.com

Performance Materials

Performance materials available for purchase on the composer’s website:



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