Mauruuru to all the Huraiti who hung out at our first annual potluck! 'Ono grinds and great company on one of the hottest (if not THE hottest) day of the year in Seattle. A cool 90 degrees. The Huraiti tamari'i (children) spent time beneath sprinklers and an in inflatable pool (complete with mini water slide - mahalo sister) while the rest of Huraiti relaxed in the shade with colorless otter pops and crazy pistachio whipped cream chocolate pie (mahalo, Marisol!). We ate pancit, lumpia, crab sushi, kimchi friend rice, Swedish meatballs, Japanese cole slaw, fried saimin, adobo, potato rolls, fruit salad, chocolate cake, raspberry cheesecake, shoyu chicken, pizza, and so. much. MORE.
Mahalo and mauruuru e nā huraiti! We celebrate our accomplishments together as an 'ohana in the spirit of aloha. This past year and a half has been full of memories, hard work, laughter, passion, and family. I cannot thank you all enough for the kindness and open-heartedness you share with each other as hula siblings and Ori 'ohana.
We are Huraiti Mana. We look forward to continue making waves and growing our community, together. Haere mua!
Arts Corps is an amazing organization, one that I have had the ultimate blessing to work with as a Master Teaching Artist. I have grown so much as an artist, a leader, a teacher, and a student. I have found so much more of myself by sharing more of myself. And that is when I learned that I am ha'api'i, a Reo Tahiti (Tahitian language) word meaning both "to teach," and "to learn." In my three years with Arts Corps, I have been sharing hula, the dance and spiritual art form of the Hawaiian Islands, with my after-school hula class and Native-Hawaiian ambassador program "Hula Mai 'Oe." However, for the Art & Sol line-up, Arts Corps invited staff and teaching artists to take the stage and share their creative talents outside of the usual scope of the organization. It was an amazing experience to perform alongside the amazing Cheryl Delostrinos, Carlynn Newhouse, Eduardo Mendonça, Amy LP, Shelby Handler and so many others in this incredible and diverse cast.
I chose to share my love of dancing to the drum beats of Ori Tahiti with an Aparima and Ote'a performance.
As my finale, in true teaching artist fashion, I asked everyone to join me in dancing fa'arapu, ta'iti, afata, and pa'oti while we all yelled joyously. Mauruuru, Arts Corps, for the work you do in igniting the light in us all.
Photo credit to: the amazing multimedia artist and storyteller Amy LP
Huraiti Mana was invited by The Outlet Collection Seattle (formally known as the Auburn Super Mall) to participate in its second annual Rock the Lot event. This year's event was dubbed the "Island Edition" with Hula and Ori Tahiti performances, musicians, food, music, games, and more for a packed family-fun event. It was on record the hottest day of 2018 as we performed onstage in the parking-lot-converted-to-fairgrounds.
Early in the morning, our Hawaiian Story Telling time was such a sweet and intimate event - right in the middle of the mall! It was a perfect venue - so creative, so original - and we were joined by the cutest young ones and their 'ohana. We discussed what it meant to be kind, and what was the right thing to do through mo'olelo kahiko (stories of old). Then, we moved outdoors for performances on the main stage alongside Jessie Matsui's Mixxed Fit demo, Arden Fujiwara's 'Ukulele performance, and Sunshine from Polynesia's Hawaiian mele performances.
Special Mahalo to the team at The Outlet Collection for creating such an amazing and warm event (no pun intended!). It is not always that Hawai'i events in Washington have such a great turn out from folks in the Polynesian Communities who are able to meet and connect with one another! We met so many amazing leaders in our Ori Tahiti (Tahitian dance) community and were able to talk briefly about our dreams for the future of Ori in the Pacific Northwest. As one of the newest dance groups to the region, Huraiti Mana is so humbled and so blessed to begin contributing to and connecting with this community here in Seattle. During our audience participation section, many friends and family and other groups' dancers joined the stage for laughter and shared love of dance.
A big mauruuru roa to Lara Mae and all who planned this amazingly fun event - your care and sincere devotion to Hawaiian and Ori cultures is so important to our communities.
Arts Corps is an amazing and innovative non-profit that revolutionizes arts education by igniting the creative power of young people through culturally engaging learning experiences. Alongside my role as ha'api'i (or ra'atira) at Huraiti Mana, I am also a Master Teaching Artist with Arts Corps. Each year, I teach after-school hula in my class titled "Hula Mai 'Oe" in Burien's Hazel Valley Elementary. Now, Arts Corps is holding it's first-ever Art & Sol community event and fundraiser.
We invite you to join us at this all-ages, family-friendly party, showcasing the creativity of the Arts Corps family of staff, teaching artists, young people, and board members.
I will be performing Ori Tahiti dance!
Purchase your tickets today and support this amazing organization and all of its talented and passionate teaching artists. Mahalo nui!