SFCA Grants Spotlight (April 2023)

May 4, 2023

SFCA grantees activities in April 2023

Kumulāʻau Sing and Haunani Balino-Sing, “Pāʻieʻie: The Rise of Hawaiian Twining” at Hawaiʻi Community College

Promotional graphic for the exhibit

SFCA Folk and Traditional Arts grantees Kumulāʻau Sing and Haunani Balino-Sing, celebrating the achievements of six of their students, held an exhibition of Hawaiian twining at Hawaiʻi Community College Hilo April 10-13, 2023 (during the annual Merrie Monarch Festival).

SFCA’s Folk and Traditional Arts program coordinator Logan Espiritu attended the graduation ceremony for the cohort: “Over the Easter weekend I traveled to Hilo by invitation of Lloyd Kumulāʻau Sing and May Haunani Balino-Sing to attend the ʻūniki (graduation) ceremony for their Hilo pāʻieʻie cohort on Friday, April 7th. Over the last year Kumulāʻau and Haunani have mentored 6 haumāna in the traditoinal Hawaiian practice of ʻieʻie weaving. The six haumāna learned to weave various forms of hīnaʻi (braided basket), hīnaʻi iʻa (braided basket fish trap), and kiʻi akua hulu manu; the kiʻi being the final project which showcases the knowledge and skills they acquired. The 6 artists of “Nā Akua Ākea Moku o Keawe Hilo – Pāʻieʻie” include Nephi Pomai Brown, Paul Kalaukoa Chang, Gay Covington, Makaʻala Rawlins, Taupōuri Tangarō and Krisha Zane. The exhibition is free to the community and runs from April 10-13, 2023 in Piʻopiʻo Hale at Hawaiʻi Community College, Manono Campus.

Kumulāʻau and Haunani will bring their teachings to two new cohorts on Oʻahu and on Hawaiʻi island (Kona) in May. I am excited for SFCA to continue working with them as they perpetuate ʻieʻie weaving with a new group of students.”

For more information about the exhibition, please visit the Ke Kumu Hawaii website: https://kekumuhawaii.com/moku-o-keawe-hilo. For cohort registration Oʻahu and Kona, please visit the Ke Kumu Hawaii website: https://kekumuhawaii.com/cohort-registration.

Hawaiʻi Women in Filmmaking featured on National Endowment for the Arts blog

SFCA and National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grantee organization Hawaiʻi Women in Filmmaking has been featured by the NEA on their grant spotlight blog:

“In a film industry overwhelmingly dominated by male content makers and gatekeepers, Reel Wāhine of Hawaiʻi creates opportunities for women filmmakers to direct, produce, write, edit, and work as production crew on films about women. Each director mentors an aspiring young woman filmmaker through the process of making a film, creating an intergenerational conversation, and growing our community of film creatives.” – Vera Zambonelli, founder and executive director of Hawaiʻi Women in Filmmaking

Read the full article on the NEA website: arts.gov/stories/blog/2023/grant-spotlight-hawaii-women-filmmaking.

Special performances of “Symphony of the Hawaiʻi Forests” by Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra

In April, the Hawai‘i Symphony Orchestra hosted special performances for students weaving together music, art, science, and storytelling. “Symphony of the Hawai‘i Forests” is a collaboration including the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW), the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Hālau ʻŌhiʻa, and others to strengthen our pilina (relationships) with each other, our forests, and the arts.The performances were free of charge for all students, teachers, and chaperones, and supported in part by funding from the SFCA. Learn more about Symphony of the Hawaiʻi Forests at SymphonyOfTheHawaiiForests.com.

Prince Dance Company brings live dance performances to Oʻahu public schools

Hawaiʻi Island-based Prince Dance Company received an SFCA American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) grant to create and choreograph “My Empty Body is Full of Stars”, and brought the show to Oʻahu in March 2023. Performance locations included the State Art Museum and several Oʻahu public schools. The company reports: “Last month Prince Dance Company took “My Empty Body is Full of Stars” and “Dancing Galaxies” on tour to Oahu for a total of 11 performances in 5 days. – It’s a beautifully interesting experience to have a contemporary dance company in Hawai’i because the impact of our work here is seen much more intensely than on the mainland. Many of our shows on Oahu were educational performances at elementary schools. Due to the limited exposure to varied forms of performance arts in Hawaii, particularly in public schools, it was especially impactful to witness the effect of our performances on children. – We are reminded as a company that one of the biggest gifts we have been bestowed is to inspire others to explore their bodies as mediums for communication, story-telling, creative expression, and self-love. To be able to serve our community in such a way that opened up young students to seeing what is possible through discipline, creativity, and collaboration is an incredibly privileged. We witness the inspiration the children felt to explore a form of dance that they normally would not have exposure to.”

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