Monday, Sept. 25, 2023 |
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KALAHEO — The tickets were sold out almost as soon as they were released, said dancer Jenny Balisacan.
That led to an “emergency meeting” with Kumu Hula Leina‘ala Pavao Jardin and several of her halau leaders and resulted in the first time the halau is offering a second performance of its ho‘ike.
“Hula is growing in popularity, and with the increasing number of haumana, we had to offer the second performance,” Balisacan said Monday between practice performances by more than three dozen dancers in Na Wahine group.
Halau Ka Lei Mokihana o Leina‘ala will showcase the achievements of its halau during the ho‘ike which opens Saturday night at 6 p.m. and Sunday, starting at noon at the Kaua‘i Community College Performing Arts Center.
Tickets for the Sunday show are $20 and available at various locations including Vicky’s Fabrics in Kapa‘a, Mokihana Travel in Lihu‘e, Cujo’s Mini Mart in Kalaheo, and the Wine Shop in Koloa.
Tammy Pu‘u, a performer with Na Wahine group, said in addition to the performances, there will be appearances by Aaron Salas, Darlene Ahuna, Walden Kekauoha, and a special surprise guest known only to Kumu Hula Leina‘ala.
“This is a celebration of achievement,” Leina‘ala said. “In addition to showcasing the dancers’ accomplishment in hula, there will be three Certificates of Achievement being presented to three halau members to the alaka‘i level, and two members to the ho‘opa‘a level.”
Leina‘ala said this is quite an accomplishment as the alaka‘i level is the step below becoming a kumu hula, and the ho‘opa‘a level is the level below alaka‘i.
Balisacan said this is the first time the halau is having leaders above the dancers and is a testiment of the dedication and commitment of its members.
The elevation of dancers also alludes to the theme of Ho‘ike 2010, e ola kona ho‘oilina (his legacy lives on), a tribute to Leina‘ala’s kumu hula, Ray Fonseca who passed away just weeks before this year’s Merrie Monarch Festival on the Big Island.
Currently, the halau has about 150 haumana, or students, ranging in age from 3 years old to kupuna in their 80s.
“We also have our kane,” Pu‘u said. “This is the first year Ka Lei Mokihana o Leina‘ala put a kane group into the Queen Liliu‘okalani Children’s Hula Competition, and our soloist, Reygan Agcaoili, earned fourth place while the groups earned third place in the kahiko and second place in the auana competitions.”
Jaedyn Pavao followed her cousin as Miss Aloha Hula, the soloist winner at the 35th Annual Queen Liliu‘okalani Children’s Hula Competition, and the kaikamahine group earned third place in the auana competition.
These dancers will be on the stage along with the rest of the halau and affords Kaua‘i residents an opportunity to witness the quality of hula presented by the dancers at the O‘ahu competition.
Pu‘u said doors to the Sunday performance will open at 11 a.m. and there will be a variety of crafters offering Hawaiiana and other items for sale. There will also be a food booth for lunch before the show.
For tickets, call 649-9033, and visit: leimokihana.com for information on the halau.
• Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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