Merrie Monarch Hawaiian Culture Enrichment
April 23 to 25, 2014
All showcase sessions cover a wide range of hula topics. In order to continue to offer more educational enrichment programs, event program admission is $5 per session for members and $6 per session for non-members. Seating is limited. To ensure a spot for a session, we recommend that you purchase tickets in advance. Ticket are non-refundable. Admission to each session goes toward future enrichment programming at 'Imiloa. Ticket pre-sales start date to be announced. Please call 969-9703 or visit the guest service desk at ‘Imiloa to purchase tickets.
2014 Schedule TBA
2013 Event Schedule in review
Hula Master, George Na‘ope, is a cornerstone of the Merrie Monarch Festival. Listen as cherished memories are shared by some of his closest students, offering an intimate glimpse into Uncle George’s personality, philosophy, teaching style and respect for his culture.
Wednesday April 3
1pm Video and discussion
Treasured stories are shared through rare video footage of Hula Greats of the 20th Century. This session highlights stewards of knowledge whose legacy and devotion to their culture can be seen in the depth and richness of today’s hula.
Hula Preservation Society is a non-profit organization that seeks to preserve and share the treasured stories of our hula elders for time immemorial. In 2012, HPS embarked on an effort to save rare footage containing live performances and recognitions of Kumu Hula, Musicians, and Composers who were widely respected kupuna in the 1980s: elders such as Alice Namakelua, Farden sisters Emma Sharpe & Irmgard Aluli & Family, Pono & Louise Beamer & Family, ‘Iolani Luhaine with Hoakalei Kamau‘u, Bill Ali‘iloa Lincoln, Sally Wood Naluai, Mae Loebenstein & Family, Kent Ghirard, and Johnny Almeida, among many more.
Thursday April 4
10am Talk-story session & Hula Performance
Setting the standard of excellence in hula and defining what it means to be frontline hula dancers are the winners of the Merrie Monarch’s first hula competition in 1971, Hau‘oli Hula Maids, led by famed musician Pauline Kekahuna with choreography by renowned Kumu Hula Vicky ‘I‘i Rodrigues.
Join us for this historic gathering of the Hau‘oli Hula Maids and learn how hula literally took them around the world. Talking-story will be Aunties Mapuana Yasue, Florence Koanui, Jade Hind, and Kumu Leimomi Ho, along with Auntie Pauline Kekahuna’s ‘ohana including younger sister Leialoha Kaleikini. They will share about their hula days with cultural icons like Joseph Kaha‘ulelio, Vicky ‘I‘i Rodrigues, Leilani Sharpe Mendez, and of course Auntie Pauline. They will also share their award-winning hula styles and signature dances, including perhaps their 1971 winning competition number.
1pm Panel-style discussion
Exploding onto the Merrie Monarch stage in 1978 leaving the audience breathless and claiming victory in hula kahiko and ‘auana divisions as well as the overall title were the men of Waimāpuna. Kumu Hula Darrell Lupenui’s strong masculine dance style ignited new interest in hula, attracting hordes of enthusiastic fans with heightened expectations of hula as a visual art.
The men of Waimāpuna, some of whom have become Kumu Hula themselves will provide an insightful glimpse of the nurturing, devotion, dedication and rigor that made Darrell Lupenui’s performances legendary. They will share the importance of the lessons learned from their Kumu and the role it played in the perpetuation and authenticity of the art, and how it affected their lives and disciplines inside and outside of hula.
Friday April 5
10am Presentation & Hula Performance
Ola Ka Hula
More than just a visual art, the importance of hula is in the language through the forms of oli (chanting) and mele (singing). Rich in metaphor and personification, ‘ōlelo Hawai‘i (Hawaiian language) coupled with movement, rhythm and sound is a strong instrument for expressing and imprinting values, teachings and histories, connecting humanity with the past, present and future.
Pelehonuamea Suganuma Harman and Kekoa L. Harman teach hula at Ke Kula ‘o Nāwahīokalani‘ōpu‘u in Kea‘au, and at Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke‘elikōlani at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo. Classes at both schools are taught entirely through the medium of Hawaiian language. Both see language as an important vehicle in imparting beliefs and practices to preserve traditional aspects of hula. This presentation is done in celebration of 30 years of Hawaiian language revitalization, and the continuance and preservation of language, and traditional cultural practices.
1pm Talk-story session & Hula Performance
Individual competition for the title of Miss Aloha Hula has long been a tradition of the Merrie Monarch festival since 1971. Each solo performance is a culmination of years of devotion and dedication to hula and is a reflection of the highest level of skill and knowledge handed down from teacher to student.
Sharing her family tradition of excellence in hula is the winner of the first Miss Aloha Hula competition in 1971, Aloha Dalire. Aloha represents a lineage of hula mastery inherited from her mother, Keolalaulani. Joining Aloha are her daughters, all Miss Aloha Hula winners, and their children. Learn about the rich heritage that has been passed down from mother to daughter.
Highlights of the 2010 Merrie Monarch Cultural Enrichment Program.