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Sunday, April 3, 2005

MERRIE MONARCH FESTIVAL




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DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Manu Boyd, left, and Robert Cazimero celebrate after Cazimero won the overall title at the 42nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival. Boyd also placed.




‘Auana contest delights
with elegance, fluid style

HILO » After a decade absent from the Merrie Monarch Festival, Robert Cazimero and the men of Halau Na Kamalei made up for lost time, winning the overall trophy in this year's 42nd annual hula competition.


Merrie Monarch Festival

Halau Na Kamalei swept all kane hula categories winning the kahiko or ancient dance, 'auana or modern dance and overall titles.

Cazimero's halau put together sterling performances over the two nights of competition -- Friday, with "Kahikilani," and last night with the proud anthem "Kona Kai 'Opua."

In the wahine division, Na Lei O Kaholoku from Kohala on the Big Island, and kumu hula Nani Lim Yap and Leialoha Amina won for the second year in a row. They also repeated in winning the kahiko competition for their sublime hula to "He Mele no Lauke'ie'ie."

William Sonny Ching, who has been kumu to the last three Miss Aloha Hula winners, continued his strong showing at the festival, with his wahine coming in second in both kahiko and overall categories, and third in 'auana. His kane took second in both 'auana and overall categories, and fourth in kahiko.

Ching plans to take at least a couple of years off from the Merrie Monarch.

In only their second year at the festival, kumu hula Kaleo Trinidad and his halau Ka Leo O Lake I Ka Hikina O Ka La showed that they will be a force to reckoned with in years to come, with his Miss Aloha Hula candidate coming in second this year, and placing high in wahine kahiko (4th). Trinidad's men placed third overall and in the kahiko for "'Ike I Ke One Kani A'o Nohili," a mele pana that heralds beloved and famous places of Kaua'i. His men placed fourth in 'auana for a virile and progressive-minded "Nakulukulu Ka Nalu."




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DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Leialoha Amina, left, Nani Lim Yap and Lorna Lim hug each other after repeating winning the overall wahine title at the 42nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival.




Other standout performances last night included the rousing and entertaining paniolo hula from Kapi'olani Ha'o's Halau Ke Ki'ai A'o Hula of Kapalama. Ha'o's choreography, that included inventive and crowd-pleasing moves that brought a bit of the rodeo into the Edith Kanaka'ole Tennis Stadium, resulted in placing third in the 'auana category.

Elegantly dressed in eggshell-colored gowns with long trains, Halau Hula O Hokulani's "Ku'uipo I Ka He'e Pu'e One" told the romantic tale, written by Princess Miriam Likelike in the late 1800s, of a couple sharing but a brief moment of perfect love. For that, the hula halau placed second in the wahine 'auana category.

Cazimero's former students also did well at this year's Merrie Monarch Festival. Manu Boyd and the wahine of Halau o ke A'li'i Ku Makani placed 5th in both kahiko and 'auana. And the kane of Halau I Ka Wekiu and kumu hula Karl Veto Baker and Michael Casupang placed second in the kahiko category.




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DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Na Hula 'O Kaohikukapulani (wahine, kumu hula Kapu Kinimaka-Alquiza) of Hanapepe, Kauai, gave a simple, lovely performance describing the beauty of Makana during the auana portion of the 42nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival last night.

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DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Halau Ke Kia'i A'o Hula (kane, kumu hula Kapi'olani Ha'o) from Honolulu performed a rousing paniolo hula at last night's auana hula competition on the final night of the 42nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival.

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DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Halau I Ka Wekiu (wahine, kumu hula Karl Veto Baker & Michael Nalanakila'ekolu Casupang) from Honolulu told of the loving relationships formed through hula.




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Merrie Monarch Festival
2005 Winners

Overall

Halau Na Kamalei, kumu hula Robert Cazimero (1,202 points)

Kane Kahiko:

1. Halau Na Kamalei (593 pts.)
2. Halau I Ka Wekiu, kumu hula Karl Veto Baker and Michael Casupang (588 pts.)
3. Ka Leo O Laka I Ka Hikina O Ka La, kumu hula Kaleo Trinidad (581 pts.)
4. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu, kumu hula William Sonny Ching (580 pts.)

Kane 'Auana

1. Halau Na Kamalei (609 pts.)
2. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu (590 pts.)
3. Halau Ke Kia'i A'o Hula, kumu hula Kapi'olani Ha'o (570 pts., tie breaker 782 pts.)
4. Ka Leo O Laka I Ka Hikina O Ka La (570 pts. tie breaker 770 pts.)

Kane Overall:

1. Halau Na Kamalei (1,202 pts.)
2. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu (1,170 pts.)
3. Ka Leo O Lake I Ka Hikina O Ka La (1,151 pts.)

Wahine Kahiko:

1. Na Lei O Kaholoku, kumu hula Nani Lim Yap and Leialoha Amina (599 pts.)
2. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu (585 pts., tie breaker 815 pts.)
3. Halau Hula Olana, kumu hula Howard and Olana Ai (585 pts., tie breaker 804 pts.)
4. Ka Leo O Laka I Ka Hikina O Ka La (579 pts.)
5. Halau o ke 'A'ali'i Ku Makani, kumu hula Manu Boyd (574 pts.)

Wahine 'Auana

1. Hula Halau O Kamuela, kumu hula Kau'i Kamana'o and Kunewa Mook (601 pts.)
2. Halau Hula O Hokulani, kumu hula Hokulani De Rego (598 pts., tie breaker 818 pts.)
3. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu (598 pts., tie breaker 814 pts.)
4. Na Lei O Kaholoku (597 pts.)
5. Halau o ke 'A'ali'i Ku Makani (595 pts.)

Wahine Overall:

1. Na Lei O Kaholoku (1,196 pts.)
2. Halau Na Mamo 'O Pu'uanahulu (1,183 pts.)
3. Halau Hula Olana (1,179 pts.)

Merrie Monarch Festival
www.merriemonarchfestival.org/


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