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Kalaepohaku In Merrie Monarch

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Kalaepohaku In Merrie Monarch

Halau Kawaiʻulaokalā

Halau Kawaiʻulaokalā

Halau Kawaiʻulaokalā

Halau Kawaiʻulaokalā


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Merrie Monarch is the most elite Hula competition in the world and Saint Louis had an opportunity to participate in it for the 2nd consecutive year. Halau “Kawaiʻulaokalā” consisted primarily of Saint Louis students along with alumni. During the week of the competition, the students have the opportunity to further connect with each other and develop a deeper understanding of the Hawaiian culture. The Halau’s participation in Merrie Monarch brought pride to Kalaepohaku and its alumni.

There’s always pressure when performing, but our preparation was to not only participate in the festival but to compete at a high level and that is what the boys did”

— Kumu Keli'i

The pressure that was on the men leading up to their performance was immense. Since placing last year at the festival, they entered the competition with a chip on their shoulder to exceed the expectation that was set forth last year. “Since placing last year, there was always that pressure to top last year’s performance, we would train hard to do just that”, said Kumu Keliʻihoʻomalu Puchalski. Despite all this pressure, the Halau entered with the mentality to compete and not simply participate. Kumu said “There’s always pressure when performing, but our preparation was to not only participate in the festival but to compete at a high level and that is what the boys did”.

Kawaiʻulaokalā before Merrie Monarch Festivalt a high level and that is what the boys did”.

Although in the end, the boys didn’t end up in the place that they would of liked to, their performance was spectacular to watch. For their Ho’ike, they performed a song called “He Mele No Kiha A Pi’ilani” which was a song for one of Kumu Keli’i ancestor who was a chief of Maui. The mens chanting was ravishing and their message of the song was deliberate through their strong aggressive dance moves. For their Auana, they danced to a Maui melody, the song represented a deeper understanding of the mountains of Maui.

 

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