"E Kolu Mea Nui and the Ho'o Nani Ka makua."
Posted on February 14, 2018 by Scot Allen
Aaron Mahi (Assistant Hawaiian Cultural Specialist, former conductor of the Royal Hawaiian Band & Honolulu Symphony Orchestra) visited campus to work with our Vocal Ensemble students in preparation for the Hawaiian Mission Houses Open House performance Feb. 17.
The Mid-Pacific Vocal Ensemble is proud to have been invited to participate in the Henry `Ōpūkaha`ia Celebration at the historic Mission Houses of Hawai'i February 17, 2018. This event marks the 200th anniversary of Henry `Ōpūkaha`ia's death, the man who inspired the Protestant Missionary movement to Hawai'i.
This prestigious event brings together four schools with missionary influences and affiliations: Lahainaluna, Punahou, Kamehameha (Maui) and Mid-Pacific Institute (Kawaiaha'o 1864, and Mills 1892). Students from these schools will be featured in a combined chorus singing in celebration, "E Kolu Mea Nui and the Ho'o Nani Ka makua."
President Peter Young and members of the Hawaiian Mission House Museum will host an Open House at Kawaiaha'o Congregational Church beginning at 10am.
Representing Mid-Pacific Institute are 16 students from grades 9-12. According to Celia Chun Wright, in preparation for this event, the Mid-Pacific Vocal Ensemble rehearsed during class time over a four-week period and was coached by Aaron Mahi on two occasions. The final rehearsal with the combined choruses will occur on the day of the event.
"This experience enabled our students to learn about one of the most influential Hawaiian men of faith, work closely with bandmaster Aaron Mahi and enjoy the opportunity to sing in the historic Kawaiaha'o Church," said Alethea Train.
"As someone who is interested in both music history and Hawaiian music history, I thought it would be a good opportunity to showcase our vocal ensemble in a public concert that involved other schools," Said Mid-Pacific Music Program Head Elton Masaki. "At the beginning of the school year, Rev. Davis, Peter Young (the person in charge of this event), and myself went through a number of emails trying to get the preliminary work done."
It also helped that Masaki had worked with and knew the conductor of this production, Aaron Mahi, and he knew that he would be great at putting together arrangements and rehearsing the groups individually and as an ensemble. "Once I heard he was conducting, I really wanted to make sure Mid-Pacific didn't miss this opportunity since I think Aaron is an exceptional vocal conductor and this would not only give our students the chance to meet students from other schools, but also a chance to work with Aaron and sing in Kawaiaha'o Church, which has amazing acoustics for singing."