Keiki Hula 2009

Ka U‘i Ho‘oheno o Kākuhihewa

Wahi a ke kumu (according to the kumu), "I think we did well because of brain power. The boys took on the challenge of memorizing a difficult, 9-verse mele -- and then they chanted and danced it all by themselves, That's what youʻre supposed to do with a sitting hula, but few hālau are willing to risk it, especially in the keiki kāne ranks. Thereʻs no kumuʻs voice on the mic to lead you and no ipu to help you keep time. I don't think I've ever seen anything like our boys before on the Queen Lili‘uokalani stage. No stomping, no twirling, no jabbing and slashing, no "kū, kū, kū." Just honest, intensely performed, language-driven hula noho. 

The same is true for our girls: they accepted the same challenges of memorizing, chanting, dancing, and time-keeping. I just stood behind them on stage and smiled at their sweet voices and soft hands as they won the Hawaiian language award and missed out on first place kahiko by half a point. Yes, I think we did well because of brain and language power, and because we had several judges who appreciated the difficulty of making it all seem easy and natural.

And I havenʻt forgotten about our ‘auana performances. I take just as much satisfaction in "Miloli‘i" and "Nani Wale e ka Mahina" as in the award-winning kahiko sets. Especially when I think about how much the new girls have improved in "simple" things like moving together, holding their heads up, and enjoying their hula. We don't get trophies for putting a huge gap between before and after, but that doesnʻt make our ‘auana victories any less real or important."

Boys' Kahiko

First Place

Girls' Kahiko

Second Place

Hawaiian Language Award

First Place (HMI Girls)

Kawena‘ula Scholarship

Kaleohano Shinagawa


Click to view our photos of the 2009 Keiki Competition >>

Our apologies to HMI's ‘auana dancers: Uncle Kīhei's camera died that afternoon, and he wasnʻt able to get any on-stage pictures of your performance.