Pilot Hawaiian Music Course Begins at Kaiulani School
Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame and Museum launched a pilot Hawaiian music course for Fourth grade classes at Kaiulani School on October 18. The course, entitled "E Mele Kakou" (Let Us Sing ), consists of twelve lessons taught over a six-week period. The course is designed to cultivate a life-long appreciation for Hawaiian music composed from 1860 through 1920. This was the era of Na Lani `Eha "The Royal Four": King David Kalakaua, his brother Prince William Leleiohoku, and his sisters Lydia Kamaka`eha Paki (Queen Lili`uokalani) and Princess Miriam Likelike.
"The timing of this course is perfect," said Charlotte White, Principal of Kaiulani School. "In October we celebrate our 100th Anniversary and the birthday of Princess Kaiulani."
John M. Derby, Sr., First Vice President of Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame, and Chairman of the Education Committee, said "we are excited about this course because it introduces children to the rich cultural heritage of our Islands." Students will listen and learn to sing songs from the days of the Hawaiian monarchy.
In keeping with the musical tradition started by The Royal Four, the classes will complete the course by learning a song composed by one of the Ali`i. Plans are for them to present their song at a musical event and ice cream social for the whole school.
Through the guidance of qualified music educators, the classes will also study the musical compositions of other composers, musicians and vocalists prominent during this era. The lesson plan for E Mele Kakou was developed for Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame by Gail Mukaihata Hannemann and Noelani Mahoe, an accomplished musician, entertainer and teacher. In addition to Mrs. Mahoe, music educators for the course will be Nalani Olds, Van Diamond, and Kaho'malu Kanada, who teaches Hawaiian language through song at Hawai`i Pacific University.
Funding for this pilot program has been provided by donations from two Directors of Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame, and a generous grant from Cooke Foundation Limited. During the second half of the school year, E Mele Kakou will be presented at Hanahauoli School.