Celebrating a beloved Hawaiian musical tradition dating back to the arrival of Portuguese immigrants in the 19th century, the Maui Arts & Cultural Center presents its fourth annual 'Ukulele Festival from 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday. Featuring many of the top players in the state, admission is free to this outdoor concert on the Events Lawn. Gates open at 12:30 p.m. Blankets and lawn chairs are encouraged. Coolers are not permitted; food and beverages will be available for purchase. A dozen finely crafted ukuleles donated by top manufacturers will be given away as door prizes throughout the afternoon.
Renowned ukulele advocate and teacher Roy Sakuma is producing the event and will serve as emcee. On the bill are Herb Ohta with Nando Suan; Uncle Richard Ho'opi'i, Joy, featuring Nelly Toyama, Candyce Narimatsu and Daniel Baduria; The Hula Honeys; Kamakakehau Fernandez; Na Palapalai; Kanekoa, featuring Vince Esquire; Hulu Lindsey with Halau Na Lei Kaumaka O Uka and Nick Acosta. Also appearing will be keiki from Kalama Intermediate Band and Kamehameha Schools 'Ukulele Ensemble as well as the kupuna group, Pennies from Heaven.
On Saturday in conjunction with the festival, Sakuma will conduct a complimentary 'ukulele workshop beginning at 10 a.m. in McCoy Studio Theater at the MACC. It is geared for beginning and intermediate players of all ages, from children through adults. The only requirements are that students can hold C, F and G7 chords. Students should bring their own ukulele, notepaper and a pencil. All participants will be eligible to enter a drawing for a finely crafted ukulele.
Maui Arts & Cultural Center photo
Uncle Richard Ho‘opi‘i is part of the all-star lineup in Sunday’s free festival.
Space is limited; register by calling 242-2787, ext. 221.