Kumu Hula Michael Pili Pang
11:15 a.m. Saturday May 6 2017, Main Stage
Born in Honolulu, Michael Pili Pang began dancing hula as a youngster, and later studied under Maiki Aiu Lake and Mae Kamamalu Klein, as well as master chanter Pualani Kanaka‘ole Kanahele. In 1986 Michael opened Hālau Hula Ka Noʻeau on the Big Island, and later in 2002 he added a second hālau in Honolulu. With his hālau hula (hula and performing group), Pang combines the folklore of the Hawaiian Islands with traditional hula, styling, music, and chant to present emotional and stirring performances that are sure to impress audiences. Pang explores both the traditional styles of his hula genealogy, and creates new hulas based on Hawaiian tradition.
Hālau Hula Ka No‘eau is dedicated to preserving and performing traditional hula, a dance style called hula ku‘i. This style evolved from the teachings of the late hula master Maiki Aiu Lake a revered teacher and artistic director. Lake is recognized as one of the hula leaders at the forefront of the Hawaiian Renaissance, a movement that began in the 1960s to restore the knowledge of Hawaiian cultural traditions, which had almost disappeared. Lake’s styling reflected the gentle mannerisms and courtly dances of the Hawaiian Monarchy during the late 1800s.
“Pang approaches Hawaiian dance as an artistic, creative and educational endeavor, not simply as entertainment… The members of the ensemble take their work very seriously, and their public performances are varied, polished and exciting.“ —William Feltz, Director of the Arts Program, East-West Center
“True hula is the quintessential expression of Hawaiian cultural values, deeply rooted in tradition and legend… The company’s hula is a far cry from the hip-swaying hula popularized and stereotyped decades ago for Hollywood movies and in songs to lure and entertain tourists.” —Barbara von Furstenberg, former Director of Programming, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa