Polynesian Dance Flash Mob Sways Onlookers Along Kaanapali Beach, Maui, Hawaii

Youth pull off first-of-its-kind Tahitian performance anywhere.
  • Honolulu, HI (1888PressRelease) August 02, 2011 - A typically placid morning on Kaanapali Beach became a swirl of song and dance in a flash last Friday. Visitors, hospitality workers and other onlookers experienced a Tahitian dance flash mob as more than 20 youth, who moments prior appeared relaxing along Maui's golden sands, began to rise and sway to the sound of Polynesian percussion. The performance culminated in an all-halau display of dance.

    The dancers were students from Te Tiare Patitifa, a halau (school) based in Wailuku. The group's director, kumu hula Keoni Manuel, choreographed the performance.

    The flash mob concept isn't new, but this incarnation puts a cultural spin on a topical phenomenon.

    "It's a bit unconventional, but we're proud to showcase the talent of our performers - especially the kids - and promote the culture of our islands," said Lynn Okamoto, general manager of Lahaina Cannery Mall. "There have been other flash mobs in Hawaii, but they're dancing to Katy Perry and Usher. We wanted to represent the host culture. We wanted to share a little aloha."

    Photos and video shot by onlookers have already made their way into the social media sphere. An official video of the performance can be viewed at Lahaina Cannery Mall's official YouTube page at www.YouTube.com/LahainaCanneryMall.

    The purpose of the performance was not only to find a creative way to share the culture, but also to raise awareness of the 13th annual Keiki Hula Festival held at Lahaina Cannery Mall, which was held July 23 and 24. The annual, two-day event features halau from across Maui County presenting richly choreographed kahiko (ancient hula) and auana (modern) hula that express the traditional values of Hawaii and the Pacific Islands.

    The performance was coordinated by Gilbert & Associates, the Maui-based advertising agency for Lahaina Cannery Mall.

    "We don't know of any other Hawaii halau that have done this, not Tahitian, and especially not all keiki," added Okamoto.

    About Lahaina Cannery Mall
    Lahaina Cannery Mall is Maui's only fully enclosed, air-conditioned shopping complex. Open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. (7 p.m. Sundays), Lahaina Cannery Mall has more than 50 shops and restaurants and is located on the north end of Lahaina Town fronting Honoapiilani Highway and Front Street. Management and leasing handled by CB Richard Ellis.

    For more information, call (808) 661-5304, visit LahainaCanneryMall.com, or follow ( @ ) LahainaCannery on Twitter.

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