Mahalo nui loa to Anne Wily-Mavaega and the many others who planned the first-ever Lacey PolyFest in June 2019! The day started off windy and dark but as the dances kept coming and the food still cooking, the sun broke out over the beautiful festival of brown Polynesians in the Lacey community and greater Pacific Northwest. We've mentioned before how it is often that "Hawai'i-themed" or "Polynesian-themed" events can often be had at the unfortunate exclusion of Polynesian people itself; however, the many organizations we've been so fortunate to have the opportunity to work and partner with has led the way in our community to create events by the people and for the people. Lacey PolyFest was one of those amazing events that brought together the Polynesian community, the dancing community, the singing community, and all those who share in the love of Polynesian culture.
Anne did so much research reaching out to every Polynesian group she could find in the Pacific Northwest and created a stunning program of unending performance, song, dance, food, jewelry, and much more. We ended up spending the entire day at the festival enjoying this home away from island home. Mahalo a mauruuru roa to the Lacey Polyfest team! We can't wait for Lacey Polyfest 2020!
Mahalo to Kalli and all those who brought Huraiti Mana to the Seattle Mariners! It was such a thrill to be carted through backstage areas of Safeco Field to perform just before the start of the game. This was a fun treat for the huraiti who joined us for a summer ball game hula performance - who would have thought! It also was an incredibly epic ball game with runs after runs! With my Grandfather a baseball legend of my hometown community, I'd say baseball holds a special place in my heart. Let's go Mariners! Let's go Huraiti Mana!
Welcome to Huraiti Mana's First Annual Fa'aori!
Fa'aori is of Reo Tahiti, the Tahitian language, meaning "to cause to dance." Through dance, Huraiti Mana has been able to grow a community of diverse, hardworking, insightful, and passionate Huraiti, "skilled dancers," coming from all over Washington, from across the Pacific, and from all levels of experience with Polynesian culture, dance, and practices. Our First Annual Fa'aori serves to demonstrate the culture we have created together that embodies the deeply-rooted Polynesian values of aloha (love), 'ohana (family), and ha'aheo (pride).
Join us as we feature 'ono grinds (delicious food!) from Koloa Kreations Catering; vendors including Kiana's Hawaiian jewelry, Franada Family Bake Sale, Wing Luke Museum, and more; a fresh palm-leaf weaving workshop; dessert by Cakes of Paradise; and a performance featuring all of our Huraiti in originally choreographed hula and ori Tahiti numbers. Come out to support your 'ohana, from our youngest huraiti to our newest dancers!
Every ticket purchased is entered into a door raffle for a grand prize!
Saturday, July 6, 2019 from 12:30PM - 4:00PM at the Nisei Vets Hall in Seattle's Chinatown-International District.
E haere mai!
Purchase tickets at the door:
We had the fortunate opportunity to work again with Northwest Folklife for their annual festival at the Seattle Center, which took place May 24-27, 2019. Huraiti Mana hosted an 80-minute Ori Tahiti dance workshop that brought together dancers from Huraiti Mana, Hālau Hula Ke Liko A'e O Lei Lehua, and many other dance troupes, as well as belly dancers and others who had never before experienced Tahitian dance. It was a tough and fun workshop going over many Ori Tahiti basics. We were also able to finish our entire ahuroa (or mehura) number, E Te Nuna'a, shown in the video above of a previous performance.
We don't have video or photos from the Tahitian dance workshop itself - immediately following the workshop, I broke my phone! So alas, I lost the media there, but media is not necessary when you understand the ite or knowledge of what was passed down to you. When you remember the stories that were shared with you. When you carry the kuleana or responsibility to continue sharing these stories through teaching.
I absolutely enjoy meeting folks and teaching dance and craft workshops across Seattle. Although workshops are a quick snapshot, just a short moment in a journey of lifetime-learning, with a shared focused energy, we can dive deeply, learn immensely, and retain absolutely the knowledge and mana we share.
Mauruuru roa to all those who create Northwest Folklife and keep many traditions alive, for many peoples.
Sunday, May 5, 2019, Huraiti Mana joined countless other performance groups and vendors for a day-long celebration at the Seattle Center Armory as a part of the Seattle Center's Festal programs. A big mahalo to Vivian and the entire voluntary crew behind the scenes of the annual API Heritage Month Celebration! This year, like every year, we at Huraiti Mana sincerely and truly enjoyed ourselves. We absolutely love the opportunity to celebrate our hard work and accomplishments and perform with and for our 'ohana.
This year we performed Ori Tahiti numbers featuring our basics class, our intermediate class, and our largest tamari'i (children) performance, ever! E ho'omaika'i to all the first-time performers from our youngest tamari'i to our newest huraiti.
When onstage, I'm alight with a fire and energy and life. We strive to have that same feeling of empowerment live in each of our huraiti and in each member of the audience sharing in our performance. Through song and dance, through reciprocal cultural practice, and through open hearts and minds, we are able to share our mana, our spiritual power, and move through this life, together.
Taffy and the amazing staff and volunteers at UTOPIA Seattle has kindly invited Huraiti Mana back to join them in their annual Lū'au celebration! United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance, also known as UTOPIA is a queer and trans people of color-led, grassroots organization born out of the struggles, challenges, strength, and resilience of the Queer and Trans Pacific Islander (QTPI – “Q-T-pie”) community in South King County. Support this non-profit organization and join in the celebration complete with a full lū'au feast, Pasifika entertainment, traditional music, and so much great company. Mahalo & mauruuru!
Date: Saturday, May 25, 2019
Time: 6PM Registration
Place: Welcome Palace 21031 International Blvd. Seatac, WA 98198
Purhcase tickets online.
Huraiti Mana will be joining for another consecutive year, the Annual Northwest Folklife Festival with an Ori Tahiti Ahuroa dance workshop on Sunday, May 26, 2019 from 3:00PM - 4:20PM. Please join Kalei'okalani Onzuka Matsui as she shares with you basic steps of Ori Tahiti, original choreography of an ahuroa or mehura, and a look toward reo Tahiti, Tahitian language.
Date: Sunday, May 26, 2019
Time: 3PM - 4:20PM
Place: Seattle Center Armory Theater 4 (upstairs)
Event: 48th Annual Northwest Folklife Festival
A full itinerary of the weekend's events will be up on May 1, 2019!
A big mahalo and ho'omaika'i to API Chaya! Mahalo for inviting Huraiti Mana to celebrate with you at your very special, warm, and welcoming gala and congratulations on such a successful fundraising event! API Chaya, with its amazing donors and family, was able to raise over $340,000 to support survivors at their annual Gala on Saturday, April 20, 2019 at The Westin Seattle.
The theme of this year's Gala: "We Believe Survivors." API Chaya serves and provides resources for survivors of violence and exploitation - they center survivors' "dignity, autonomy, and leadership" in all the work they do. API Chaya served 785 survivors and their dependents (families) and trained over 12,000 service providers, community, and faith leaders in 2018 alone.
Huraiti Mana is blessed to be a part of an amazingly supportive, loving, and caring community. We hoped to bring to their event a cause for celebration, and excitement for life, body positivity and ownership, and a joy that transcends across all cultures, with the joy of dance. Mahalo nui loa for inviting us into your home, your mission, and your community. E Mālama Pono!
Join us for this historical event as Lacey enjoys its first annual Polynesian Festival! Lacey PolyFest is a non-profit event comprised of dedicated individuals, families, and local organizations who are volunteering their time and skills to celebrate the region's cultural diversity. Huraiti Mana will be joining in on the fun with an Ori Tahiti performance at 12:20PM! We hope to see you there!
Date: Saturday, June 22, 2019
Time: 10AM - 6PM; Huraiti Mana performs at 12:20PM
Place: Regional Athletic Complex 8345 Steilacoom Rd SE Olympia, WA 98513
10:30-10:50 Laumua Students - RJ Maae/Irene Tavai
11:00-11:30 Hula Halau ‘O Keala’akua Naniloa Mana’oakamai - Charmaine Galiza
11:40-12:00 FACES Dance Company - Kristine Keliiki
12:10-12:40 Guma ‘Imahe - Joel Larimer
12:50-1:10 Huraiti Mana - Kalei’okalani Matsui
1:20-1:50 Poerava - Monique Maiava
2:00-2:30 NW Blend - Alika Kaeka
2:40-3:10 Ke Liko A’e O Lei Lehua e Kupuaokalani - Kapua Quenga
3:20-3:50 Lemana Polynesian Revue & Laumua Boys - Anne Mavaega & RJ Maae
4:00-4:30 JBLM Band - Sgt. Walker
4:40-5:00 Mama Lusi - Lusiana Mapu-Lara
5:10-5:45 Te Fare O Tamatoa - Malia Radford
5:55-6:15 Amataga Fou - Irene Tavai
6:20-6:50 Lemana Band - Anne Mavaega
7:00-7:30 Ms B Royal - Jessica Logologo
Organizations we love