Kapaa Middle School groups perform Wednesday

KAPAA — The Kapaa Middle School’s Choir and Ukulele Band will be joining forces for the annual Spring Choral and Ukulele Band concert on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the covered court on campus.

The students are coming off a successful Heritage Music Festival last month in California, where they won double gold awards. Music director Mary Lardizabal said they are looking to put on quite the performance to celebrate a year of hard work.

“I’ve been doing this for so long, but each year is so different. And this year, the kids really shined vocally and musically,” Lardizabal said. “They really just represented what I’ve taught them, above my expectations.”

Not only has this year’s crop of students performed well as a unit, Lardizabal said the group also won individual awards during the Heritage Music Festival, including the “The Legacy Lives On” award — an honor that was given to Jotis Russell-Christian.

“That was a very special award for him because I nominated him for it and out of 2,500 students, he got that award,” she said. “It represented our whole school and state.”

This week’s concert is the “big” one of the year, according to Lardizabal. It not only celebrates the students’ work, but also thanks the community for its support.

“The chaperones, the community support we get, I can’t do this alone,” she said. “It’s important that we thank our community members. The community is what makes our program successful.”

Featuring music from “Moana” and some Hawaiian music, the concert also will feature one of Lardizabal’s favorite songs — and she has told her students they cannot afford to make mistakes on it.

“‘My Favorite Things’ from the ‘Sound of Music.’ My mother taught me that so I told them that have to sing it really, really good,” she said. “We’re bringing some really neat songs of the past so people can join in and sing. It’s a great repertoire of music.”

The end-of-year concert is free and open to the public.

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