New Choir Kicks Off Spring Tour In Aiea

Performing its inaugural spring benefit choral concert next week in Aiea, Melemai Kapu’uwaimai will include the Keiki Kani Choir and the Kapolei Chorale in a program of “spirit-filled” Hawaiian and patriotic tunes.

The concert begins at 7 p.m. May 15 at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, 98-939 Moanalua Road, with presale tickets at $5, or $7 at the door. For more information, call 294-1184.

Melemai Kapu’uwaimai (“songs from the heart”) is directed by Marilyn Liu Kim, retired Leeward Community College music professor who took the school’s Kanikapila Singers on tour for 28 years. Her new ensemble will embark on its first performance tour May 24 to Hilo and Kona for eight shows in five days in tribute to the island’s military veterans. The Aiea concert will help expenses for the Memorial Day holiday trip for its seven men and seven woman (ages 17-24), plus Kim and accompanist Robert Gower.

“I thought I wasn’t quite ready to fully retire,” Kim explained, “so I founded this new group.” Gower, who played for Kim and her students in previous LCC tours. He teaches music full time at the University of Miami.

Directors of the Aiea-based Keiki Kane Choir (Desmarie Carranza) and Kapolei Chorale (Doris Dudley) are both former students of Kim.

Additional donations are welcome to the ensemble’s fiscal sponsor, Pacific American Foundation (