That time of the year again…

The Merrie Monarch Festival is nearly over, and I know I’ve posted on this before. But for the second year (that I know of), the kumu hula (hula teacher) Mark Keali’i Ho’omalu had his wahine (women) do a “masculine style” hula, including the attire. He’s very controversial, and I know lots of traditionalists don’t like him. But I find the strength exhibited by this hula kahiko (ancient style) simply awesome!

He Mele O Kamohoali’i

I love the more feminine style as well, of course. But it’s beautiful to see the whole range of expression capable in hula.  🙂  Oh, and related to TTWD — how d’ya like those paddles, eh? *LOL*

Edited to add: And for those of you that like that kind of thing, here are some handsome men doing hula:  Aia I Ni’ihau I Ku’u Pawehe. 😀


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44 Responses to That time of the year again…

  1. Ash says:

    It looks like a lot of fun. 🙂 I can’t dance… 😳

  2. Ash says:

    OMG in the end it looks like they’re all swatting each other with those paddles! 😀

  3. needatop says:

    That was beautifully done, very similar to the Maori culture here, there would be a lot of controversy over women performing a haka though. That was very cool, thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Alyx says:

      Welcome Needatop! Yes, the migration theories of the Polynesian people suggest Aotearoa was settled after Hawaii, so it’s not surprising the cultures share similar features. I think it would be awesome to see some strong women doing the haka! 😀

  4. Micah says:

    Thanks for sharing the festival with us again. After your post last year, I got on You Tube and found several that I liked.
    I have to say I’m a fan of this new style. Can you perform any of the dances Alyx?

    • I’ve seen Alyx dance… she is very graceful. *bg*

    • Alyx says:

      Unfortunately, I cannot dance hula. 😦 I wish I could! I would definitely do this new style if I could…I’m a fan too. And as for TMT’s comment *cough* she’s referring to a bon dance we attended. (At least, I HOPE she’s referring to that! Any other kind of dancing I might have done in her presence I’m quite sure would be anything but graceful! *LOL*)

      • Hupotasso says:

        That’s so beautiful to watch; I’m on my way to youtube to find and watch more.

        What is a “bon” dance?

        • Alyx says:

          If you haven’t seen my previous post, then check that out too — there are a couple more links to some hula you might enjoy: It’s Dance, Jim…

          Obon or just Bon is a Japanese Buddhist custom to honor the spirits of one’s ancestors. It has been celebrated in Japan for more than 500 years and traditionally includes a dance, known as Bon-Odori. In Hawaii, where there are lots of ethnic Japanese, the Bon season lasts 3 months during summer and all ethnic groups gather to watch, dance, and eat great food. 🙂 Here’s a pic of people at a bon dance: Kona Daifukuji Bon DanceKona Daifukuji Bon Dance

          What TMT neglects to mention is that *I* saw HER bon dancing as well, and she did brilliantly….even with an injured ankle! 😀

  5. Such a sensual, beautiful culture… The chanting always strikes me too – and I would love to hear more of it. Thanks for sharing:) xxx

    • Alyx says:

      It is a beautiful culture, and their connection to the spiritual is so evident in all their traditions, including the dance and chanting. I’m happy you enjoy it too. 🙂

  6. dvjan21 says:

    Thank you for this post. I have a sleazy mind, which, if not in the sewer, is headed that way. Efforts at uplift often come through idiosyncratic paths. Loved it. Just beautiful

    • Alyx says:

      Welcome, Dvjan21! I’m glad you enjoyed it, and that we could divert your mind’s journey to the sewer, even if temporarily. 😀

      • dvjan21 says:

        I lurk around your blog because you write engaging stories with very human characters. This is yet another reason to stay engaged.

        • Alyx says:

          Well, then I’m glad you delurked enough to let me know you like the stories. I do appreciate my readers’ appreciation…very much so! Thank you. 🙂

  7. kati000 says:

    Wow, this is pretty amazing and it entirely changed the preconception I had about Hula ! Thank you *very* much for sharing this, Alyx !
    The chant was just as impressive as the dance, actually the chant sometimes reminded me of Gregorian Chant. I watched the videos you linked here and in your post last year and some more I found on youtube. It it this “side by side” (I don’t want to say mixture, because it really is “side by side”) of grace, strength, delicate and also forceful movements. And it’s the togetherness of everyone dancing paired with the beauty of the individual contributions. And I love the fact that the entire group visits a place before they sing and dance about it. I would have so much liked to understand what was sung and didn’t find the lyrics. A powerful, spiritual and graceful culture !

    I also liked the fern in the attire of the dancers and the calmness of the dance leaders (?) when introducing the dance.

    And last not least I can’t resist to quote a line from the excellent article Peach linked to in last year’s thread:

    In the perspective of traditional Hawai‘ians, the buttocks were related to sexuality and the genitals. ”

    Aha, that explains the Village location after all ! xDDD

    • Alyx says:

      Glad you liked it, Kati. 🙂 You know, I love Gregorian chant as well, so it’s interesting you found a parallel. Yes, when they dance the hula, they embrace the spirituality of the entire experience. They have to learn where to gather the ferns and other adornments, and they actually have to gather and make the lei they wear. They learn how to dye the garments. They learn how to make their own instruments. They pray, chant, dance before gathering all these things to thank nature and pay tribute for the gods and goddesses who provide. The teachers are revered as knowledgeable individuals who can pass down history. It’s all quite moving.

      And yes, they enjoy their sexuality. I love that about Hawaiian culture! *bg*

  8. Mil says:

    Alyx, this was really moving. Thank you .. loved it as much as last years. 🙂

    • Alyx says:

      Glad you enjoyed it, mate. 🙂 I’m sure Oz has its own interesting chants and dances, eh?

      • Mil says:

        Yes we do… commonly known as a “Corroboree” (- more of a tourist name for it), traditional dance is a way of passing on dreamtime stories and understanding of spirit, often ritualistic and always linked to “place” – kinda similar in to Hula in that sense, but it’s not really at all sexual, not even subtly. Interesting, eh? Do you think that’s because the Hawaiian’s had plenty of easy game, and so developed a healthy sexual appetite? Where the Aussie’s were wandering across hot sands, tripping in the heat 🙂

        Just in case you’re interested, this is snap of some contemporary Indigenous dance:

        • Mil says:

          *Oh, when I say “easy game” I mean food (and therefore more time on their hands), not lovers.

        • Alyx says:

          That was amazing! Eerie and fantastical and full of mana (spiritual power)! I’ll bet the environment had a lot to do with it, yes. I knew what you meant about “easy game,” and it’s bound to influence your outlook on life (and therefore your stories about it) if it seems like the world is almost against you at times.

          Thanks for sharing that. 🙂

        • Peach says:

          Wow, that was intense! I’ve never seen Aussie indigenous dance before, thanks for sharing the link, Mil.
          I really oughtta visit Oz one of these days. 😉

  9. Ash says:

    I often feel jealous of other cultures. *LOL* I feel my culture can kinda be a bit lame sometimes, but we do have a dance that can be pretty impressive and you have to be really fit to be able to preform it. It’s called Halling dance. I found this video of a well known group called Frikar. This one is more modern and it’s really cool. Halling dancers make good break dancers. 🙂

    • Ash says:

      Damn. That’s not what I meant to post! It’s the second video of the play list. 😛 Stupid youtube!

    • Alyx says:

      Wow, that’s amazing too! I’d never heard of “Halling” and it’s so interesting. The knee bends and kicks remind me of what I’ve seen of Russian dancers, but the music was like Celtic/Bluegrass! Thanks for sharing that, Ash. 🙂

      It’s funny you should be jealous of other cultures, though! Isn’t your culture where VIKINGS came from??! They are world famous!

    • Peach says:

      That’s cool, Ash. I’ve never heard of Halling dance before, but it seems very much like break dance. Thanks for sharing that. 🙂

  10. Peach says:

    Hey Alyx,
    Late to the party – but how come the links are no good? Wonder if the problem is on my end? (Didn’t mean that kinda ‘end’ 😉
    Thanks for posting anyway. Good enough to know you enjoyed it! 🙂

    • Alyx says:

      Yes, I’m sorry, but it appears they were taken down! 😦 I will try to look for more later, when I have time, and replace them.

  11. kati000 says:

    I tried long and hard to find a typical German dance, but all I could think of is the “Schuhplattler” which is actually only a Bavarian (and Austrian) dance. So here is a home video of one… . As half of my family actually is Bavarian, I thought this video (especially when you look at minute 2 ,xD) could yield another argument towards the nature-side of the “nurture vs. nature” debate in spanking. I mean if this is the only German folk dance I can come up with, then spanking *has* to be genetically encoded *vbg*.

    • Alyx says:

      Thanks for sharing that, Katie. That bit about spanking being genetically encoded is funny! *bg* I have to agree with you there, as some of those men seemed really into it! 😀

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