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Cherissa Kane wins Miss Aloha Hula


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POSTED: Friday, April 17, 2009

HILO » Audience expectations were high with the debut of Keali'i Reichel's hula Halau Ke'alaokamaile's at this year's 46th annual Merrie Monarch, and right out of the gate, his Miss Aloha Hula contestant, 25-year-old Cherissa Henoheanapuaikawaokele Kane, won the crown, as well as winning the Hawaiian Language Award.

 

;[Preview]    Winner: Cherissa Kane
    ;[Preview]
 

A dancer with Hälau Ke‘alaokamaile captured the title of Miss Aloha Hula 2009 on Thursday night in Hilo at the 46th Merrie Monarch Festival with 1,064 points.

 

[ Kahiko | Auana ]

 

She won that award for her oli (chant) in her hula kahiko (ancient) performance of “;Maika'i Ka 'Oiwi O Ka'ala,”; a mele (song) honoring King David Kalakaua that also compares the peaks and ridges surrounding Mt. Ka'ala to the form and actions of a loved one. It was one of several performances that distinguished themselves for being performed unamplified in the Edith Kanakaole Stadium, with a group led by Reichel accompanying his lithe dancer.

Her father, Moses Kane, played bass while his daughter later danced her hula 'auana (contemporary) of “;Ka Nohona Pilikai,”; a performance that garnered her rousing applause from the sold-out crowd. The mele honors the seaside home of Reichel's grandmother, Tutu Kamaile.

Kane's overall performance garnered her the winning total of 1,064 points. Twenty-six points behind her in second place was C'ari Mae Kawailehua Kealoha of Hula Halau 'O Kamuela. (The halau, led by kumu hula Kaui'onalani Kamana'o and Kunewa Mook, was the overall winner at last year's Merrie Monarch.) Her hula kahiko was particularly winning, as she danced to gentle strains of the Hawaiian favorite, “;Hi'ilawe,”; sung by a band led by Sean Na'auao.

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Merrie Monarch images and audio.

Third place went to Kaholo Kahikipi'ilani of Halau Na Mamo O Pu'uanahulu, led by Sonny Ching, with a total of 1,026 points. With 1,017 points in fourth place was Pohaikau'ilani Ann Nu'uhiwa of Aloha Dalire's Keolalaulani Halau 'Olapa O Laka (whose 2008 contestant last year won the Miss Aloha Hula title), and fifth place, with 1,005 points, was Maria Ka'iulani Kanehailua of Ka La 'Onohi Mai O Ha'eha'e.

Like Reichel's halau, Ka La 'Onohi Mai O Ha'eha'e, led by Keawe and Tracie Lopes, made their debut at this year's festival.

46th MERRIE MONARCH MISS ALOHA HULA 2009 RESULTS

Winners:

1. Cherissa Henoheanapuaikawaokele Kane, Halau Ke‘alaokamaile - 1,064 pts.
2. C’ari Mae Kawailehua Kealoha, Hula Halau ‘O Kamuela - 1,038 pts.
3. Kaholo Kahikipi‘ilani Panui, Halau Na Mamo O Pu”uanahulu - 1,026 pts.
4. Pohaikau‘ilani Ann Nu‘uhiwa, Keolalaulani Halau ‘Olapa O Laka - 1,017 pts.
5. Maria Ka‘iulani Kanehailua, Ka La ‘Onohi Mai O Ha‘eha‘e - 1,005 pts.

Hawaiian Language Award:
Cherissa Henoheanapuaikawaokele Kane, Halau Ke‘alaokamaile - 46 pts