Culture

GREAT PERFORMANCES
John Leguizamo’s Road to Broadway

 GREAT PERFORMANCES: John Leguizamoʻs Road to Broadway

 

Go behind-the-scenes of John Leguizamo’s Tony-nominated one-man show, Latin History for Morons, a comic but pointed look at how Hispanic culture has been portrayed and repressed throughout American history.

 

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NĀ MELE
The Leo Nahenahe Singers

The Leo Nahenahe Sisters on Na Mele

 

“Leo nahenahe” is Hawaiian for “soft and sweet.” Now in their eighties, The Leo Nahenahe Singers celebrate over 50 years of performing together on this episode of NĀ MELE. Ethelynne Teves on guitar, Noelani Mahoe on ukulele and Mona Teves on upright bass accompany their instruments with their soft and sweet vocals. These Nā Hokū and Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame honorees perform Hawaiian classics like “Hanohano Wale No” and “Koni Au I Ka Wai.”

 

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PBS HAWAI‘I PRESENTS
Hawaiian Masterpieces: Ka Hana Kapa

PBS HAWAII PRESENTS Hawaiian Masterpieces: Ka Hana Kapa

 

This film follows present-day kapa makers through the kapa-making process. Marie McDonald and her daughter, Roen Hufford, create kapa using the same types of tools and methods that ancient Hawaiians used. The program culminates with the dressing of a hula halau in Hawaiian kapa for the Merrie Monarch Festival.

 

 

 

NĀ MELE
More! Ledward Kaapana and Family

 

Ledward Kaapana remembers his Uncle Fred Punahoa playing the song “Radio Hula” in Kalapana: “In the morning, like one, two o’clock in the morning. In Kalapana, it’s so quiet, so… you know, and it’s dark, and so, he used to just sit outside on the porch, and play his guitar. I don’t know if you ever experienced sleeping…and hear one guitar just playing sweet music that just wake you up and like, ‘Oh, so sweet,’” Kaapana remembers. “Radio Hula” is one of the songs that Ledward Kaapana, along with his sisters Lehua Nash, Rhoda Kekona, and Lei Aken play in his Kaneohe garage on a rainy evening. They also share an energetic slack key performance of “Kuu Ipo Onaona,” and Ledward honors the late Dennis Kamakahi with “Kokee.”

 

 

RICK STEVES’ EUROPE
Glasgow and Scottish Passions

RICK STEVES’ EUROPE: Glascow and Scottish Passions

 

Glasgow, once an industrial powerhouse, offers a fun look at Scotland’s vibrantly gritty urban side — full of edgy street art, trendy dining, and the striking architecture of Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Leaving town, we’ll tap into Scottish passions as we tour historic Stirling Castle and nearby battlefields, sample a dram at the land’s most beloved distilleries on the Speyside Whisky Trail, watch a sheepdog demonstration, and struggle to lift the Manhood Stone at a Highland Games.

 

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Hula as a Bedrock of 21st-Century Success

 

CEO Message

 

Hula as a Bedrock of 21st-Century Success

 

This month, the renowned musical Lim Family of Kohala on the Big Island takes the stage on Nā Mele: Traditions in Hawaiian Song (Mon., Jan. 28, 7:30 pm). We at PBS Hawai‘i have wanted to feature this remarkable ‘ohana for years.

 

However, it’s not easy to catch the family members in one place for long! They’re often in different parts of the Islands, and in farflung countries, in versatile groups, performing and teaching. Ed Yap, a family musician and husband of fellow performer and kumu hula Nani Lim Yap, is known for his flying fingers, booking and re-booking airline tickets online as plans evolve.

 

As I interviewed Nani for an upcoming episode of Long Story Short (Tues., Jan. 22, 7:30 pm), I saw once again, with another Island family, that the tradition of hula can serve as a bedrock for modern business success. Nani has long been in demand as a hula teacher in Japan and now, China, for her deep knowledge of this ancient art.

 

“(Hula) is about the collective, and it is about recognizing that together, we produce something that is amazing.” – Ulalia Woodside, Executive Director, Nature Conservancy of Hawai‘i

 

Nani and Ed’s son Manaola Yap, appearing in a Long Story Short encore (Tues., Jan. 15, 7:30 pm) is a young fashion designer and business owner with national and international credentials. “My background in design, and everything I do, comes from hula,” he says.

 

A dancer performing HulaAs a child, he helped his mother stage hula dramas for hotel visitors, creating costumes that helped tell the stories. For a dance honoring Pele, the fire goddess, he says Nani burned all of the edges of the dancers’ fabric “to a crisp.”

 

Successful father-and-son designers and hula practitioners Sig and Kuha‘o Zane of Hilo, Hawai‘i Island, also credit hula with inspiring and sustaining their aloha shirt business. For Sig, it started decades ago with wanting to make a special gift to court his future wife, seventh-generation kumu hula Nālani Kanaka‘ole. Sig learned silk screening and created plant designs, because in hula, many plant forms are important. Like Manaola, he had no formal design or business training.

 

Ulalia Woodside, Executive Director of the Nature Conservancy of Hawai‘i, oversees 40,000 acres of preservation lands. She grew up in Waimānalo, Windward O‘ahu, learning the discipline and interconnectedness of the hula tradition. She says it forged her view of how to live life and how to carry out her work.

 

“(Hula) is about the collective,” she says, “it is about recognizing that together, we produce something that is amazing.”

 

Season’s Aloha

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PACIFIC HEARTBEAT
Splinters

PACIFIC HEARTBEAT: Splinters

 

Feel the pulse of the pacific – the stories of its people, cultures, languages, music and contemporary issues – through PACIFIC HEARTBEAT, the nationally distributed series from Pacific Islanders in Communications and PBS Hawai‘i. These films highlight struggles, values and victories that draw us together and make our Pacific cultures unique.

 

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Splinters
In the 1980s, an intrepid Australian pilot left behind a surfboard in the seaside village of Vanimo, Papua New Guinea. Twenty years later, surfing is not only a pillar of village life, but it’s also a means to prestige. This story unfolds in the months leading up to the first National Surf Championships and explores the hopes and dreams of the surfers, and how surfing has led to societal changes in a male-dominated culture.

 

 

 

RICK STEVES’ EUROPE
Scotland’s Islands

RICK STEVES’ EUROPE: Scotland’s Islands

 

We’ll begin on the tranquil Isle of Iona, where Christianity first reached the shores of Scotland. Then we’ll visit another of the Inner Hebrides, road-tripping across the Isle of Skye, where we’ll explore Iron Age forts, peat fields, a venerable distillery, thatched crofter huts, and the dramatic Trotternish Peninsula. Finally, we’ll sail to Orkney — more Nordic than Celtic — with its stony remnants of a thriving Iron Age civilization and evocative reminders of the 20th-century wartime harbor at Scapa Flow.

 

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MOROCCO TO TIMBUKTU:
An Arabian Adventure, Part 1 of 2

Morocco to Timbuktu: An Arabian Adventure

 

Writer and explorer Alice Morrison attempts to follow the ancient “Salt Roads,” historically one of the world’s richest trading networks, which led from south of Tangier to the fabled sandstone city of Timbuktu. Riding the famous “Marrakech Express,” crossing the vast Sahara on camel back and trekking on foot through snowstorms, Morrison takes a centuries-old journey through unforgettable destinations. This one-of-a-kind travel series highlights North Africa’s ancient cultural heritage, from hidden libraries to the world’s oldest university in Fes, while also providing perspective on how modern political realities have affected the trade routes.

 

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RICK STEVES’ EUROPE
Scotland’s Highlands

RICK STEVES’ EUROPE: Scotland’s Highlands

 

In Scotland, legends of Bonnie Prince Charlie swirl with pipers and kilts around crumbling castles. We remember Highland massacres in Glencoe, and try tossing a caber (log) at a Scottish clan gathering in Culloden. We play hide-and-seek with the Loch Ness Monster, tour a whisky distillery in Oban, and take a ferry to sacred Iona.

 

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