It’s A HOT Winter For Two West Schools

Thanks to the Sidney E. Frank Foundation, Hawaii Opera Theatre (HOT) now has a $25,000 grant to support its statewide education and outreach projects, which include partnerships with Waikele Elementary and Pearl City Highlands elementary schools through its residency program.

The residency program places staff members at various elementary schools to work with students and teachers to produce and perform opera. At Waikele Elementary, for example, the students are working on their own adaptation of Cinderella.

“It’s hard, hard work on everyone’s part, but there is incredible talent, and it’s so wonderful when you feel the ship turning – in a good direction,” stated HOT education director Erik Haines.

“Opera is delightfully unexpected in Hawaii,” added HOT artistic director Henry Akina. “And yet, opera has been part of Hawaiian island culture for more than a century.

“Its history in Hawaii, which dates back to the 1850s, includes stories of Queen Emma singing in the chorus of Verdi’s Il Trovatore while her husband King Kamehameha IV served as the stage manager.”