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Female Hawaiian falsetto contestants sought

The Maui News

The inaugural Carmen Hulu Lindsey Leo Ha’iha’i Falsetto Contest is seeking contestants.

It will be the first female falsetto contest in Hawaii, according to an announcement, and will take place April 10 at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua’s Celebration of the Arts. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

Interested individuals are asked to apply with a demo. For more information, see the link found under events at facebook/festivalsofaloha or call Daryl Fujiwara, event coordinator, at 264-8779.

The annual Celebration of the Arts at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, will convene Hawaii artisans, educators, cultural practitioners, speakers and entertainers during the annual celebration. Hands-on art, demonstrations, films, cultural panels, music and dance will act as the common ground to allow visitors and residents the opportunity to interact and enjoy the “Number 1 rated cultural event,” according to Modern Luxury Hawaii magazine.

Tickets and sponsorships are available at www.eventbrite.com/e/carmen-hulu-lindsey-leo-haihai-falsetto-contest-tickets-91705145559.

In addition to awards and prizes, first place will receive $600 cash; second place, $400 cash; and third place, $300 cash. Contestants are heavily judged on ‘Olelo Hawai’i, and a special award will be given for Hawaiian language. The grand prize will be a professional recording (four songs) sponsored by Napua Greig-Pihana Productions, Michael Casil-I-Vibe Productions and Wailau Ryder.

“I’m honored to be joining the prestigious tradition as the namesake to the first wahine falsetto contest,” said Lindsey. She has represented Maui as an Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee since January 2012 and is a longtime member of the ‘Ahahui Ka’ahumanu and the Central Maui Hawaiian Civic Club. A professional entertainer and recording artist, “Hulu” won the 2014 Na Hoku Hanohano female vocalist of the year award for “A He Leo Wale No E.”

“Unlike any other cultural and arts event, Celebration of the Arts gives attendees the opportunity to gain authentic insight into the Hawaiian culture by creating their own art piece, conversing with practitioners and artisans and consuming some of Hawaii’s finest cuisine,” said Andrew Rogers, general manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua. “This year, we are excited to welcome the Carmen Hulu Lindsey Leo Ha’iha’i Falsetto Contest to add a new dimension to this event’s cultural commitment. As our journey continues to evolve each year, and as we focus on growth and progress, we look forward to Celebration of the Arts continuing to have a positive and profound impact upon everyone in attendance.”

“In its 29th year, the Celebration of the Arts gathers the finest traditional artisans and contemporary artists to share and discuss na mea Hawai’i . . . all things Hawaiian. It offers an enjoyable atmosphere for the entire family to learn, discuss and suggest possible paths to create a partnership for the future. We are proud to host and honor Aunty Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey as we pay tribute to the art of leo ha’iha’i (falsetto singing) for wahine (women),” said Clifford Naeole, The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua’s Hawaiian cultural adviser and creator of the Celebration of the Arts.

“Physically, it seems more challenging for a male to sing in higher octaves, but control and pronunciation are what the judges are looking for, in addition to being pleasant to the ear,” said Fujiwara. “We invite all wahine who love Mele Hawai’i to join us at the Celebration of the Arts April 10.”

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