HONOLULU – Celebrating its 22nd anniversary, the internationally-recognized Hakuoh University Handbell Choir will be on O‘ahu from February 14-21 on its 19th Goodwill Tour of Hawai‘i, offering two public concerts and scheduled performances for Consular Corps of Hawai‘i, friends of Hakuoh University, and more than 600 O‘ahu school children.
Led by acclaimed director Hirotaka Arai, who founded the choir in 1988, the 16 student handbell ringers will perform free public concerts on:
February 16 at 7 p.m.
United Church of Christ
467 North Judd St., Honolulu
February 17 at 7 p.m.
Windward Community College's Palikû Theatre
45-720 Kea‘ahala Rd., Kane‘ohe
The choir will perform a range of selections from classical standards including Mozart's "Le nozze di Figaro" to contemporary hits from the musical "The Lion King." The choir has the capacity to ring seven octaves of handbells, and their dedication to practice and performance has created worldwide demand for their music.
The choir will kick off its Goodwill Tour of Hawai‘i with a performance for the Consular Corps of Hawai‘i and friends of Hakuoh University at a Friendship Luncheon on Tuesday, February 16, at 11 a.m. at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i's Mânoa Grand Ballroom. In addition, they have scheduled free concerts for Windward District school children on Wednesday, February 17, at Windward Community College, and Leeward District school children on Thursday, February 18, at Leeward Community College.
From their home in Oyama City, Tochigi Prefecture, Japan, Hakuoh's all-female ensemble has traveled to performances in Canada, England and Australia and has entertained audiences including the Emperor and Empress of Japan and the King and Queen of Belgium. In August 2008, the choir attended the International Handbell Symposium in Orlando, Fla. They have also performed at Disney World and Tokyo Disneyland.
In February 2008, Hakuoh University signed an international cooperative agreement with the University of Hawai‘i Community Colleges. The annual Handbell Choir Concert, co-sponsored by Hakuoh University and the UH Community Colleges, is one of the cooperative activities undertaken by the two institutions.
For more information about the choir's performances, call (808) 956-0321.
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