She studied hula over many years with nā Kumu Hula Hoakalei Kamauʻu, Pōmaikaʻi Gaui, and after her ʻūniki (graduation) under Kumu John Keolamakaʻāinana Lake, was designated Kumu Hula and Kahuna Kākalaleo (chant & protocol master), entrusted with the kuleana of perpetuating the hula for Hālau Mele’s Nā Hanona o ka Hālau Hula Pā Ola Kapu. Under her direction its members perform as court dancers for the Ho’okū’ikahi Festival at Pu’ukoholā Heiau on Hawaiʻi Island. She is also a Kahuna Kākalaleo in Mailekini, the adjoining heiau used by women.
Māhealani Wong has been called on to share her knowledge of traditional hula, oli and protocol at home and abroad, serving as a Kumu Hula for the Mana Maoli collective in Aotearoa (New Zealand) and as the Official Chanter for the canonization ceremonies for Saint Damien of Moloka’i, held in Belgium, where she had the honor of chanting at his birthplace and for the royal family, and at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Rome in 2009. She also teaches hula, ‘ukulele and Hawaiian Studies to students at Waldorf School in Honolulu.
Sam ʻOhukaniʻōhiʻa Gon III
He is a Hawaiian cultural practitioner and conservation ecologist. He studied dance and chant with several Kumu Hula including Hoʻoulu Cambra and Edward Kalāhiki. His training with Kumu John Keolamakaʻāinana Lake culminated in his ʻūniki as a Kahuna Kākalaleo, a practitioner of chant and protocol. He is the Kumu Oli for Hālau Mele’s Nā Waʻa Lālani Kāhuna o Puʻu Koholā and a Kahuna Pule (prayer master) for Puʻukoholā Heiau.
Dr. Gon is also a renowned conservation biologist who is dedicated to protecting and restoring the ecosystems native to the islands. He is the Nature Conservancy of Hawaiʻi’s Senior Scientist and Cultural Adviser and he has lent his expertise to international projects around the world. As a distinguished public speaker, he has lectured at The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian (Washington, D.C.), Ethnologisches Museum Staatliche Museen zu Berlin (Germany) and the Museum Nationale d’Histoire Naturelle (France).
For this unique blend of Hawaiian culture and ecology, he was named a “Living Treasure of Hawaiʻi” in 2014.
Marques Hanalei Marzan
He is a Hawaiian fiber artist who trained under master weavers such as Julia Minerva Ka‘awa and Esther Kakalia Westmoreland. He is a designer and specialist in Hawaiian cordage and textiles who has been distinguished with many awards for his art. He has represented Hawai‘i in numerous indigenous art festivals, including the Festival of the Pacific Arts and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. He shares his understanding of and passion for the fiber arts through presentations and workshops that restore, in modern culture, the living presence of rare Hawaiian forms, materials, and designs.
Hanalei Marzan also studied hula and oli under Kumu John Keolamakaʻāinana Lake. After his ‘ūniki, he became a Kahuna Kākalaleo, skilled in the practice of Hawaiian chant and protocols, and he is a Kahuna Pule (prayer master) for Pu'ukoholā Heiau. He currently serves as cultural advisor at Bishop Museum, the Hawai‘i State Museum of Natural and Cultural History.
He is a fluent speaker and teacher of ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi, and a lifelong scholar of Hawaiian culture, history, and language. He studied oli and traditional Hawaiian protocol under Kumu John Keolamaka’āinana Lake for many years. He serves as Kahuna Pule (prayer master) for the ceremonies at Pu'ukoholā Heiau and is the kahu (guardian) of the Ho’āla sunrise rituals held weekly on Waikiki Beach in Honolulu.Kalama has also made a name for himself as a storyteller, musician and slam poet. Exercising his art with passion as well as humor, he has been invited to tell stories in ‘ōlelo Hawai’i and English at the Bishop Museum’s Mary Kawena Pukui Storytelling Festival and at Honolulu's Annual Talk Story Festival. Kalama has performed and toured in several productions with the Hawaiian language theater group Ka Hālau Hanakeaka and most recently in a production of Pakaʻa a Lanakila with the Hawaii Spring Wind Quintet. He is also a member of the group Kupa’āina, which combines Hawaiian music with contemporary genres such as rock, hiphop and reggae.
She received her foundation in hula and choreography from Kumu Hula Ellen Pukaikapuaokalani Castillo. She had the privilege of studying with Hula Master George Holokai, and was amongst the ‘ūniki graduates of Kimo Alama Keaulana’s Lei Hulu Papa ‘Uniki ‘Ehā. She continues to study oli with Sam ‘Ohukani’ōhi’a Gon of Hālau Mele. As a storyteller, Kilohana Silve has participated in the Annual Talk Story Festival in Honolulu and released a CD of Hawaiian tales, chants and music.
Kilohana Silve has always sought to promote Hawaiian culture abroad by curating exhibitions as an art historian and through a cross-cultural approach to hula. She founded the first Hawaiian dance school in France, Hālau Hula O Mānoa, named after the valley in which she was born. After 30 years in Paris, she returned to Hawai’i and continues to teach haumāna in Honolulu, Juneau (Alaska) and Beijing (China).
Through her classes at Kapi’olani Hospital Women’s Center, Kokua Kalihi Valley clinic and the Salvation Army’s drug recovery program, as well as her involvement in the Ola Hou I Ka Hula study conducted by researchers at the University of Hawai’i and Queen’s Medical Center, she has become a pioneer in the promising new field of Hula for Health.