Frank Kawaikapuokalani Hewett
Frank Kawaikapuokalani Hewett is the kumu hula of Kuhai Halau O Kawaikapuokalani Pa Olapa Kahiko, established in 1978. In his youth, he received specialized training from his grandmother, Eva Kana'e, and studied under Edith Kanaka'ole while attending the University of Hawaii at Hilo. He also studied with Aunty Emma DeFries, and had since been recognized as her protege. His work in the field of Hawaiian culture takes him off island and abroad on a regular basis. His halau now includes students from Kaua'i, Maui. O'ahu and Japan. In addition, Kawaikapuokalani has served the hula community as a judge in various competitions, and has generously shared his compositions with numerous halau hula.
Leimomi Ho, kumu hula of Keali’ika’apunihonua Ke’ena A’o Hula established in March of 1984. This school of hula perpetuates the traditional hula stylings and legacy of Victoria Keali’ika’apunihonua II Rodrigues. Kumu hula Leimomi instills within each haumana the importance of respecting the art of hula and the cultural traditions passed down by our kupuna. This is furthered with the understanding that this hula family’s participation at performances where each dancer shares the love of hula to the very best of their ability. Leimomi was “hanai” (adopted) by Auntie Vickie Rodrigues, Leimomi was raised as a “punahele” (favorite) along with Auntie Vickie’s own children. Music and hula was an inherent part of the Rodrigues’ family life. Learning hula from Auntie Vickie required close observation and listening. Words and motions were pronounced and performed three times with the expectation that it be committed to memory. There were no lyric sheets or writing motions and steps when Auntie Vickie taught. Leimomi will confess that much of what her kumu has given her remains unwritten and the only repository is inside of her heart and mind. Leimomi is currently a dance instructor of the hula at the Kapi’olani Community College of Honolulu for over ten years. Leimomi Ho along with her halau has performed and competed in countless Hawaiian events and programs. She has entered in the annual Merrie Monarch, King Kamehameha, Hula ‘Oni E, and more bringing home several top awards.
Kumu Sonny Ching began his teachings with his grandmother Pua'ainahau Eleakala Nahulu Guerrero at the age of 4. It was preordained that Sonny would be the one to continue hula in his family. In 1984, he had an ‘uniki with his grandmother and at the age of 15, Sonny was given permission to experience being in a halau. That was his beginning with Kumu Frank Kawaikapuokalani Hewett. He danced with Frank for 3 years and it was he who gave Sonny the name he uses today “Kahakuleilehua”. He later studied with Lahela Ka'aihue who is very influential to his men’s hula ‘auana. In 1986, Sonny was asked by Kumu Moses Crabbe to takeover his class at Paki Park and established Halau Na Mamo O Pu'uanahulu which is currently located in the Kapahulu and Kapalama areas of Honolulu. Sonny feels hula is getting back to traditions. “I think hula has turned around due to the revival of other aspects of our culture like the ‘olelo, oli, planting, la’au lapa’au, navigation, pãna, lua and weaving. I hope that people like myself and my fellow kumu hula are looking to keep things traditional yet conducive to our times.”
Chinky Mahoe began dancing hula in December of 1967 under hula master “Uncle” George Na‘ope. In July of 1977 he then joined “The Men of Waimapuna” under the direction of the late kumu hula Darrell Lupenui who has won several Merrie Monarch competitions with both their men and women halau. In November of 1979 Mahoe, with the help and consent of his kumu Darrell, began teaching his halau in Kailua, O‘ahu. In 1982 Mahoe left “The Men of Waimapuna” to concentrate on his halau “Kawaili‘ula”.
Kawaili‘ula, meaning mirage of shimmering water is a family name as well as Mahoe’s middle name.
Mahoe is universally recognized for his choreographic creativity and for his many compositions for hula. Halau Hula `O Kawaili`ula, considered one of the top halau, has won numerous awards at the major hula competitions over the years, including several top prizes at the world renown Merrie Monarch Festival. The halau travels widely introducing traditional hula to enthusiastic audiences in Japan, New Zealand, Korea, Okinawa, and Canada, as well as numerous cities across the United States. Mahoe has twice performed in the legendary Carnegie Hall with his dancers. He also holds many workshops to instruct Mainland, Japanese, and Canadian kumu hula in efforts to promote the art form.
Kumu hula Charles Kaupu has lived in Hawaii all his life save for three years spent in Okinawa. Born and raised on the island of O’ahu, he has for the last 16 years been on the island of Maui. His family comes from the island of Moloka’i with another part of the family well established on the island of Hawai'i as well. He has spent the better part of his life teaching, be it history, culture, religion, lecturing not only at Maui Community College, Maui Campus, but on the islands of Lana’i and Moloka’i as well. He has also traveled to Washington D.C. to lecture at the National Geographic headquarters, performing there as well at the Smithsonian National museum of the American Indians ground breaking ceremony. Charles’ expertise is in “oli,” the ancient art of Polynesian chant handed down through the ages, comes from formal schooling as well as from family practices, kupuna (teachers), and personal mentors. He has
earned the right of passage in the traditional sense of graduation called an “Uniki” through a process called “’Ai-lolo,” which literally means, “to eat the brain,” a symbolic eating ritual of a consecrated food source, after which the graduation performance is showcased. Charles became kumu hula (instructor) in 1979 and has been teaching chant and dance these many years. He first became a part of the musical troop HAPA in 1993 and continues to travel and perform with HAPA today.MO’OLELO
Kumu Hula Keali`i Ceballos draws his love for hula from his mother, Cecilia Cissylani Ceballos. An avid hula performer and instructor in her own right, "Aunty Cissy" introduced hula to her son when he was very young. In the spring of 1991 Keali`i founded Halau Keali`i O Nalani in the 12 years since its inception. As a kumu hula, Keali`i strives to perpetuate the Hawaiian culture - its arts, its identity, its language, its values. He teaches his students the qualities, theories, traditions, mythologies, history, and traditional values that make up the fabric of the Hawaiian culture. He emphasizes the importance of awareness of body language while story-telling through dance.
Mae Kamamalu Klein
Kamamalu Klein began her teaching in 1984 in her home in Kane’ohe. In 1992 the name of her halau Kukalehuaika’ohu came to her in a dream. Auntie Mae Kamamalu Klein began her hula with Ma’iki Aiu Lake at age 25 when she was in search of a hula school for her three daughters so that they could learn the hula and a part of their Hawaiian heritage. This was the beginning of Auntie Mae’s love a affair with hula. This affair with hula and the hula relationship with the late Auntie Ma’iki Aiu Lake lasted for 23 years. Auntie Mae took a break which lead to an urging of a friend found herself with Auntie Hoakalei Kamau’u’s halau. This teaching lasted for two years and was told to return to her original teachings under Ma’iki to assist her with the graduates of ‘Olapa & Ho’opa’a of 1972. She returned once more to Auntie Ma’iki in 1973 and remained until her passing in 1984. Auntie Mae Kamamalu Klein became the first “kokua kumu” in 1973 after receiving her status as “kumu hula” in the traditional rituals of ‘Uniki.” She teaches hula out of her home in Kane’ohe, a site chosen by her kumu. She teaches with the enlightenment and promise made to Auntie Ma’iki a few days before her passing to open her school and continue the legacy.
Marlene “Nawahine” Haili Kuraoka has been teaching the hula in Kane’ohe and in Kailua, O’ahu. Nawahine comes from the hula line of the late, Auntie Bella Richards of Kailua, O’ahu. Nawahine currently resides in Waimanalo teaching keiki through kupuna continuing the legacy of “Auntie Bella.” Her halau is called, “Halau Hula ‘O Nawahine.” They have performed for C&C of Parks & Recreation, Muscular Dystrophy, Food Bank, Aloha Festivals, Hawaiian charter schools, Department of Health, American Nurses Association and many more. She has entered her halau in the annual Queen Lili’uokalani Keiki Hula competition, the Hula ‘Oni E competition where she recently took several top awards for solo and group entries for 2004. Nawahine works fulltime for the State Department of Health, and Windward Public Health Nurses Section. She has been married for 30 years and has 3 children and 2 grand children. Because of her love for family and hula, she’s had successes with HVB and O’ahu Visitors Bureau, Aloha Tower Market place, Makaha Sons Bash, Royal Hawaiian Shopping center shows and much more. Nawahine is still an avid hula dancer, capturing the beauty and essence of the hula art form as past down from her mentor, Auntie Bella Richards.
Greg has been involved in Hawaiian and Polynesian dance for over 30 years. He started dancing in 1974 while growing up in San Francisco, California and later returned to the islands.
As a professional dancer, he has performed at such showrooms as the Waikiki Calls, Voyage, The South Seas Village at the Hawaiian Hut, Tahitian Lanai and the Polynesian Palace. He has traveled to perform and teach in Japan, Korea, Tahiti and the West Coast.He was an assistant instructor (Alaka'i) for Keolalaulani Halau 'Olapa O Laka, Kumu Hula Aloha Dalire from 1994 to 2000. He continues to teach hula classes for the State of Hawai’i, Department of Education, Community Schools Adult Education Program at Kaiser High School since 1992. He is now the Kumu Hula of Halau Kawaihoa, which was established in August, 2000. He and his wife "Nena" have been married since 1979 and have three children. They have lived in Kane'ohe, Hawai'i since 1983. Their company, HO'ALA HAWAI'I, publishes a monthly hula newsletter called HULA MAI 'OE; teach and consult in hula productions, costuming and dance, and produce hand-made hawaiian bags and accessories. Their website is www.hoalahawaii.com and email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Raised in Ko`olaupoko on the island of O`ahu, living hula began for Noelani Kapuaakuni Tachera at home with her tutu, Maude Pauahi Dow. For the next thirty years, Noelani’s hula genealogy included Noenoe Zuttermeister and Kalani Po`omaihealani. To commemorate her tutu and those who have gone before her, Noelani opened Halau Hula Keanuenueulana`ia in 1992. She believes hula is a “lifestyle”, a breathing and living entity, connecting our na`au to the spiritual paths of our ancestral lineage and to significant events of our native people connecting the past to the present. Hula gives clarity and insight to who we are, kanaka maoli. While raising a family of four, Noelani completed a Masters in Elementary Education and Bachelors in Hawaiian Language and Education. Her academic years included teaching in Public and Hawaiian Immersions Schools, and Community College for 12 years. In 2000, Noelani left the academic world of classroom teaching and entered the Bishop Musuem as a Cultural Educational Specialist. She was the Project Manager of the first ever Hula Exhibit, Hula: Dance of Poetry honoring kumu hula past and present. In perpetuating traditions and culture, Noelani also develops and delivers programs from a native perspective and shares stories with children and adults island wide. Today, Noelani continues her life of hula and education within her `ohana and in the communities at large, perpetuating ‘olelo makuahine, hula kahiko, oli and Hawaiian cultural traditions to many.
Rita Moon represents the island of Lana'i. Born and raised on Maui, Rita learned hula auana as a young girl from Auntie Emma Sharpe and Auntie Doll Aricayos of Lahaina. Rita relocated to Lanai in November 1978 and joined Auntie Elaine La’ikealohaaihaiona Ka’opuki’s halau, Na Hula O lakealoha, from whom she learned the importance of preserving the hula kahiko. With the blessing of Auntie Elaine, Rita opened her own halau, “Na Pualei O Kakuno’a”. The focus is to preserve the few chants belonging to Lanai, as well as to provide an arena for alani’s keiki to learn and therefore keep the island hula heritage alive. These days, the halau performs at the Lodge at Ko’ele and the Manele Bay Hotel weekly. When Auntie Elain became too ill to continue teaching, she turned the students over to Rita and charged her to “malama the keiki of Lanai”. All of Rita’s intent goes into this request and in this way she honors and remembers her Kumu, Auntie Elaine La’ikealohaihalona Ka’opuki.
Like her Mother, Paulette Nohealani (Kekuewa) Kahalepuna has many years of experience creating fine Hawaiian featherwork. Inspired by her Mother's dedication to featherwork, Paulette has advanced her skills to the point that she teaches throughout the Hawaiian Islands and is a Master of the Art in her own right. She has also traveled to the continental U.S., Austria, and New Zealand to demonstrate featherwork. Paulette is a member of the University of Hawaii speaker program, Lama Ku, on Hawaiian arts and crafts and has been a featured speaker at both the Windward and Leeward Community Colleges on O'ahu. She has also served as a judge in fresh flower lei making contests at schools, fairs, and community centers around the state.
Auntie Kealoha Kalama is well known as an entertainer, recording artist, producer and kumu hula for over 40 years. She is the kumu hula for Hula Halau O Pohai Kealoha since 1971, at the Bishop Museum where she also has been performing a hula show over 25 years before retiring. For many years she produced her own Polynesian Review for many main show rooms in the Waikiki hotels. She also worked as a ground hostess for Aloha Airlines and as a sales representative promotional entertainer. She has traveled extencively, throughout the world, and the US. Kumu Kealoha is also a Hawaiian Studies teacher for the Department of Education at Admiral Nimitz Elementary.
Auntie Wanda Aki’s purpose in life is to continue to share my knowledge in the traditional hula while expanding and experiencing the changes of the hula in it’s renaissance and present modern form of influence. It is important for Kumu Wanda to perpetuate in the most professional and humble way that has been taught to me. I am most appreciative to all that have taught me and have played a special role in highlighting my hula knowledge in sharing with me their knowledge both physically and spiritually.
Shane Kamakaokalani Herrod better known as "Maka", was born in Hale`iwa, O`ahu and raised by parents Juliette Aukai Kawahakui Herrod and Alfred Prado Sr. along with my eleven brothers and sisters. Now resides in majestic Anahola, married to `Iwalani Ka`auwai who blessed me with three wonderful children, Anuhea, `Auli`i, and Kalalea. Interested in everything Hawaiian since the age of seven and began his formal hula training at age ten with Aunty `Iwalani Tseu of `Iwalani School of Dance. At the age of fifteen, I studied oli and traditional hula with Uncle John Na`one of Nanakuli. Moved to beautiful Kaua`i in 1990 and studied with Aunty Kaohikukapulani Kinimaka-Alquiza.
In May of 1992, Na Hui O Kamakaokalani began in Koloa, Kaua`i with the blessings of Na Kumu Hula Aunty `Iwalani Tseu, John Na`one, Aunty Kapu Kinimaka-Alquiza and Nathan Kalama. Since then the halau has blossomed to Kapa`a and Lihu`e. In 1996 I was given the opportunity to work with Aunty Puna Kalama-Dawson, Uncle Nathan Kalama, and Doric Yaris. Together, we created Hui o Kalamaola which consists of four halau combined to fulfill the beautiful mana`o of "Aloha kekahi i kekahi". For seven years I`ve studied under the spiritual hula guidance of Aunty Puna Kalama whose knowledge came from her mother, Aunty Lani "Nana" Kalama and Aunty Lokalia Montgomery.
Through the years, the halau has participated in many community events such as the Aloha Week Festivals, Koloa Plantation Days, Coconut Festivals, and Prince Albert Keiki Hula Festival to name a few. We participated in the Kaua`i Mokihana Festivals in which we were honored in the Kane category, best musical group award and the `Olelo Hawai`i award.
Na Hui o Kamakaokalani continues to strive to perpetuate our Hawaiian Culture through hula, oli, mele and 'olelo. It is through God's grace that we share these gifts of Aloha and Hula. Mahalo to all who has paved this pathway for me to preserve all things Hawaiian for the next generation to come. E hula mau!
Kumu Leialoha Amina was introduced to hula by her mother Mary Ann Nuela Lim. Soon after, her father sent her and her sister , Nani to his cousin Kumu Hula Auntie Margaret Kaleolani Moku of Niuli I Kohala, Hawaii. She was encouraged by Auntie Margaret to study with other Kumu Hula while under her tutelage as well as after Auntie passed on. In a program through the state Foundation on Culture and the Arts, Lealoha was exposed to the styles of Aunty ‘Iolani Luahine, Uncle Geroge Na’ope, Auntie Edith Kanaka’ole, Kaha’i Topolinsky, John Ka’imikaua and Darell Lupenui. Leialoha was introdued to Auntie Pilahi Paki who has been a pivotal and life-influencing teacher. Today Leialoha resides on Oa’hu and travels to the Big Island to teach with her sister Nani Lim Yap. Together, with the blessings of Pilani Paki, Halau Na Lei O Kaholoku was created. They have been teaching for over 20 years. Halau Na Lei O Kaholoku is a culmination of the experiences of my sister, our alakai Lorna and myself. "It is our hope that we have done justice to our ancestors. We have kuleana to pass these traditions and to perpetuate a style that is truly part of Kohala."
In 1984, Keala danced with The Men of Waimapuna under the direction of Darrel Ihiihilaukea Lupenui when they participated in the King Kamehameha Hula and Chant competion and in 1986, when they competed in the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival. In 1999, Keala became a practitioner of Ho’oponopono with Kupuna Malia Craver, a cultural specialist at the Queen Liliuokalani Children’s Center. Currently a resident of Kona, Hawaii, Keala attends the University of Hawai’I at Manoa and West O’ahu, working on double bachelor’s degrees (completion December 2003) in Elementary Education, focusing on education Hawaiian Children and on Counseling individuals who are substance abusers. He teaches Hawaiian Studies to grades K-8 ad Ke Kula ’O ‘Ehunukaimalino (a Hawaiian immersion school) in Kealakekua, Kona. Keala studies with the papa Kumu Hula under the direction of Kumu Hula Kawakapuokalani Hewett. He is a spiritual brother to the Ladies of Kawaikahe Lani Malie and The Men of Kahulaliwai with Blaine Kamalani Kia. He also advises a Wai Iwi Ola in Kailua-Kona and Lalau Na Wai Ola of Sunnyvale, California, Led by Kumu Kau'i Isa-Kahaku anad the Hau’oli Hula Studios in Japan, led by Kumu Arleen Hau’oli.
Ku’ualohanui Kauli'a was born in ‘Ewa Oahu, but was raised on homestead land in Nanakuli, on O’ahu’s West Coast. He comes from a family of 10, in which he is the youngest. His maternal family stems from Hana, Maui and his paternal cal are deeply rooted in the Ka’u soil in the Ka’u soil of Hawai’i’s island’s southern coast. Ku’u , as he is affectionately called, has taught hula since 1989 and is Kumu Hula of Ka Pa Ku Kalaulu (a school of Hawaiian Culture and Dance located in Wai’anae, O’ahu), as well as Ka Pa Kolonahe on Maui. He is also an instructor of Hawaiian Language, chant dance, culture and protocol at the Kamehameha Schools – Maui Campus. He is an upright bass player with the group Kolonahe and also plays ukulele with various other traditional Hawaiian musical trios. Ku’u who is fluent in Hawaiian, loves to compose chants, songs and mele hula, as well as work on genealogy. His philosophy of hula includes integrating many other co-existing Hawaiian cultural aspects not his weekly lessons. Although hula is the primary vehicle in his teachings, he strongly feels it’s important for pupils of hula to learn the other necessary components of the culture as well. These include Hawaiian language, prayers, chants, stories, proverbs, values and genealogy. “To me hula is a discipline that helps people grow, not only in the culture, but in life as well.
Aloha Wong Dalire began her hula studies at 3 under the direction of hula master, George Na’ope. Her studies continued with Auntie Emma Defries, Luka & Louise Kaleiki in the hula kahiko. In 1963, her mother, Mary Keolalaulani Wong and sister, Lokelani Wong opened their studio in Kane’ohe. At 15 she became alaka'i under the guidance of her mother. She received her first Kumu Hula Certification in the hula ‘auana. In 1971, she was crowned the first Miss Aloha Hula of the Merrie Monarch Festival. In 1972, she was presented with the “kihei” completing her studies under Auntie Defries symbolizing the authority of Kumu Hula. Her three daughters, Kapua, Kau’i and Keola are all Miss Aloha Hula Crowned winners and accomplished dancers. Keolalaulani Halau Olapa O Laka was renamed in November of 1979, after the passing of her mother. Thus kumu hula Aloha Dalire, along with her daughters have graced many stages and award winning halau performances that have given pure joy and excitement to all walks of life.
Mike and Sylvia Kop's family business, The Hula Supply Center, has been serving island families since 1946. They live to support the dance that is Hawai`i, through their knowledge of implements, musical instruments and clothing. They are committed to providing the best that can be made for kumu hula, the dancers and the organizations that perpetuate the dance. Mike and Sylvia are not just a business, but `ohana to the halau circle.