E Mele Kakou Has a New Partner
|"E Mele Kakou" plans are discussed with Charlotte White (center), Principal of Ka`iulani School. Hall of Fame Education Committee members are Mandy Bowers (left), and John Derby (right), Committee Chairman and Hall of Fame Vice President.|
The Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame and Museum (HMHF) and the Hawai`i Youth Opera Chorus (HYOC) have joined together to support and promote music education in our public schools. This is a pioneer project; Hawaiian music is presented through choral music. Hawaiian repertoire is used to teach basic music concepts, choral singing and Hawaiian culture.
The new program, begun last Fall, includes not only students but their teachers as well. Our hope is that at the end of the project the teachers will be able to continue with their newly developed teaching skills.
Workshop for Students and Teachers
In August 2001, HYOC sent seven staff members to Ka`iulani Elementary School to present a one day workshop for all fifth graders and their teachers. The morning was spent in round robin with four workshops which included hula, dalcroze movement, bel canto technique, kodaly and basic music theory. The literature used were: E Aloha E (Mele Ho`okipa) by S. Mailelauli, i Naki (HYOC staff member); He Inoa no Ka`iulani (Mele Inoa) by Lili`uokalani (with hula); Nani na pua Ko`olau (Mele) by Lili`uokalani, and the traditional mele Ulili`e.
After lunch, the fifth graders came together for mass rehearsal and a school assembly for grades three and four. The teachers as well as the students were amazed by what they were able to accomplish in just one day.
We have the Cooke Foundation to thank for generously funding this collaboration. Thanks also go to John Derby, HMHF Education Committee Chair; Lynne Johnson, and HMHF Director, Linda Colburn for their work on the grant proposal.
Spring 2002 Program
This coming Spring Semester, the already developed "E Mele Kakou" curriculum will be infused with the music standards from the Department of Education, and implemented into Ka`iulani's 12-week music program for fifth graders. The teaching staff will include a teacher from HMHF, and a choral director and accompanist from HYOC.
Following the success of these events in 2001, the 2002 semester will again include a trip to a Royal Hawaiian Band Concert, an ice cream social, and culminate with a school performance for family and friends.
(Nola Nahulu is a Director of HMHF and member of the Education Committee. Among her many other leadership positions, she is a Director of Hawai`i Alliance for Arts Education, and has been Executive & Artistic Director of the Hawai`i Youth Opera Chorus since 1986.