Kamau Pono Concert showcases rare Hawaiian art forms

(Image: Hawaii News Now)
(Image: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - After a two-year break, the highly anticipated Kamau Pono concert returns for "Iwakalua": an evening celebrating 20 years of hula, family, and tradition. Hawaii actor, composer, and recording artist Kumu Hula Tony Conjugacion has performed all over the world. Now, he is bringing an incredible range of talents to the stage with a special lineup of ancient and rare styles of hula. The 2017 Kamau Pono will be held at St. Louis High School's Mamiya Theater on Saturday, October 7-9:30pm.

The concert will not only amaze audiences, but also educate them on a rarely seen form of Hawaiian story telling: Hula Ki'i (puppetry). For years, several Ki'i have quietly resided at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. and at Bishop Museum on Oahu. Not commonly practiced, the Hula Ki'i has been percolating on Hawai'i Island in recent years, in large part, due to the dedicated research and efforts of Kumu Hula Auli'i Mitchell.

The evening's special guest, Kumu Auli'i, will debut two three-foot tall handmade marionettes. His Halau o Moana Nui A Kiwa will perform the Hula Ki'i along with other styles. The halau is from Aotearoa, New Zealand, where Kumu Auli'i has also been sharing and teaching Hawaii's ancient arts since 2013. They will be joined by the graduating students from the Pacific Institute of Performing Arts in Avondale. He says this will mark the beginning of a year-long educational tour to educate the hula community on the art of the Hula Ki'i.

Kumu Tony's Halau Na Wainohia, celebrating its 20th anniversary, will highlight its Kaikamahine preteen class (featured at this year's Prince Lot Hula Festival). Also, special guest Kumu Minerva Pang and the Minerva Pang Hula Studio will be performing. At the young age of 90, Kupuna Minerva will celebrate 60 years of Hula and 31 years at the Hawai'i Department of Education's Kupuna Program.

For tickets and more information, visit http://www.lamakusociety.com

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