PAN-PACIFIC HULA FESTIVAL
The traditional Hawaiian fine art of hula has become very popular world-wide and especially in Japan, where there are approximately two million dancers and enthusaists of this time-honored Hawaiian practice. The Pan-Pacific Festival provides a dream opportunity for many of these groups who train all year long, in anticipation of dancing hula in Hawaiʻi – the birthplace of this much revered and appreciated art form.
A true example of cultural exchange, you will see a talented assembly of hālau (hula group or school) from all across Japan performing their interpretation of the hula on stage. In addition, the audience will be treated to a special exhibition each day, performed by local hula hālau, Hālau ʻO Nāpualaʻikauaikaʻiu, led by Kumu Hula Sallie Yoza of Honolulu.
The art of hula originally performed by trained dancers in temples under the direction of priests to honor the gods and praise the chiefs. Referred to as hula kahiko, ancient hula was traditionally accompanied by a ʻoli (chant). Wristlets, anklets and necklaces of animal teeth, bone, or shells were common ornaments for thsi ritual. The women wore pāʻū (short skirt) and the men wore malo (tapaloincloths). The “music” was the accompaniment of traditional instruments, such as the ipu (gourd), split bamboo sticks, stones used as castanets, and pahu drums (made of sharkskin).
Contemporary hula, commonly referred to as hulaʻauana, arose from the adaptation of traditional hula ideals to Western influences. It is primarily a visual dramatization of a story or description as told through sinuous movements and gestures to ʻmele (song). Costumes may be skirts of raffia, or freshly cut ti leaves and lei (interwoven flowers of leaves). Most notably, the music is based on Western chord progression, utilizing instruments such as the ʻukulele, guitar and double bass.
Held under a majestic banyan tree with beautiful Waikīkī Beach just steps away, dancers and spectators will truly enjoy a warm and breezy Hawaiian evening of friendly competition among hula enthusiasts!
Friday to Sunday, June 12-14, 2020
Kuhio Beach Hula Mound (near the Duke Kahanamoku Statue)