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Performance Endorsements

Halau Na Wai Ola of San Jose, CA brings the spirit of Hawaii to their audience through their dance, music, and song. I had the opportunity to see them during their Hula for Haiti Red Cross Fundraiser in 2010, and they thrilled the crowd with every dance. I’ve never seen such energy at a Hawaiian performance. Three shows were given and the 600+ audience members had a great time watching and listening to the dancers ranging in age from very young to adult, and to top it off, over $3100 was raised for the relief effort. As a military member, I have seen many cultural dances in many different places stateside and overseas, and Halau Na Wai Ola is one of the best I have seen to date. Through the dancers of ‘Opio of Na Wai Ola, the spirit of aloha will most definitely be perpetuated through their graceful hula and their commitment to spreading goodwill. 

Commander, DCMA Lockheed Martin Sunnyvale

We were honored to have the the Kaikamahine hula dancers from Halau Na Wai Ola perform at the City of Mountain View’s Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month Celebration which was held in my year as mayor, in May 2009, at City Hall Plaza.  The girls are exquisite performers who clearly stole the show with their talent, professionalism and love for hula dancing.  To show our appreciation, I recognized the girls at a City Council Meeting in June 2009, with Certificates of Recognition and commemorative thank you pin for their outstanding performance. We were so impressed by the dancers that we subsequently asked them to perform at another City of Mountain View event celebrating Arts Month in October of 2010, held at the Center for Performing Arts. These most talented performers are true ambassadors of dance and the Hawaiian culture and they are to be commended for their dedication and commitment to their beautiful art. 

MARGARET ABE-KOGA, Councilmember, Mayor 2009
City of Mountain View

The San Jose Giants are honored to have the Kaikamahine hula dancers from Halau Na Wai Olada dance at our annual “A Giant Luau.” The event highlights Hawaiian culture in various aspects and the young ladies that dance contribute greatly to the success of the event. Their love for hula and respect for their culture shines through their performance and spreads the spirit of aloha throughout the crowd. They are professional in every manner and light up the stadium with their presence. We are proud to continue to have them as our guests at “A Giant Luau” and hope that this tradition will continue for many more years to come. 

JULIANA PAOLI, Chief Marketing Officer
San Jose Giants

The keiki group from Halau Na Wai Ola danced for the Japanese American Museum of San Jose’s volunteer appreciation luncheon in 2006 and 2008.  The volunteers really enjoyed the hula dancing.  They brought smiles to everybody’s faces!  The girls were all very friendly, polite, and organized.  They seemed so professional for such young girls.  Many of the volunteers remember the early 2006 performance and enjoyed seeing how grown up the girls were in 2008.  We hope to have them back again soon.

ROY MATSUZAKI, Board of Directors, 
Japanese American Museum SJ

The Cupertino-Toyokawa Sister City organization has been extremely fortunate to have the support of the Halau Na Wai Ola dancers since 2009.  Our annual Cupertino Cherry Blossom Festival showcases many different aspects of Japanese/Asian culture.    The dancers from the ‘Opio of Na Wai Ola Performing Group have displayed the art of hula dancing with amazing grace, energy, and beauty in every performance.  In their youth, they show surprisingly great poise and respect, not to mention a great love for their art and culture.   I believe they have become one of our crowd-favorites along with our professional sumo and taiko groups!   We wish them all the best as they continue their quest to spread “Aloha”.  

LAURIE MATSUSHITA, 2002-2010 Entertainment Chairperson
Cupertino Cherry Blossom Festival

We have hired the Na Wai Olal hula group for six different events over the last year and a half.  They have been outstanding each and every time.  The events included celebrations for our inaugural flights from San Jose and Oakland to various destinations in Hawai’i as well as a celebratory dinner beginning service from the Bay Area to the Islands.  They have performed for over 600 of our passengers, employees and guests.  Kaui was an excellent narrator, explaining the different portions of the blessing ritual.  The dancers were exceptional and added such beauty and grace to our events.  They have provided outstanding entertainment that truly took our celebrations to the next level.

WARREN BARDEN, Customer Service Manager SJC Station
Alaska Airlines

I am writing to share the wonderful experiences I have had in the presence of the young ladies performances under the direction of their instructor (Kumu Hula), Kau’i Isa-Kahaku.  I see that Halau Na Wai Ola and their youth and leadership team have been chosen to perform on your community service tour called Spread A Little Aloha.  I cannot think of a more qualified group of youth that carry that essence of aloha wherever they perform or gather, and I truly feel that it was a great choice to involve this group.

I have had the opportunity to see them perform many times, be with them to share aloha and dance hula just for the love of what they do, they have all performed in a hula festival that I present each year in California, and they are a certain pleasure to be with.  The aloha spirit that is displayed with the group as they gather together, and also as they perform is certainly natural to them all.  Their guidance through their Kumu Hula Kau’i is obviously something that is respected all of the time in their halau (hula school), as well as they perform, and I feel confident that this group will be great Ambassadors for your tour and you will be proud that they are with you.

This group of dancers and the entire halau are always the crowd favorites.  They are always full of energy, knowledgeable of their hula, and dance with love in their hearts.  I wish your tour the best of success in your travels and enjoy Halau Na Wai Ola on your tour.

George Na’ope Hula Festival, The Makanaaloha Group

I have had the distinct pleasure of working with the kaikamahine hula dancers from Halau Na Wai Ola.  Impressed with their performance at a previous City of Mountain View event, we invited the group to participate in “Sunday Arts Live: A Multicultural Celebration.”  We were delighted with their contribution to our event, which was produced in October 2010 at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, in SecondStage, as part of an annual celebration of National Arts and Humanities Month.  The girls are an outstanding example of professionalism, and their devotion to their craft is evident in their breathtaking performances.  We appreciate their willingness to share the Hawaiian culture with our city and hope to work with them again in the future. 

PATRICIA CHENG, Chair, Arts Action 21
Former Chair, City of Mountain View Performing Arts Committee

We were very fortunate to have Halau Na Wai Ola’s Opio team perform at this year’s Festival of Tables event.  The dancers put on an amazing show, were very professional and kept the guests engaged throughout the entire performance.  I especially enjoyed the stories that were being narrated to help explain the meaning behind each song and dance as this gave our guests the opportunity to learn more about the Hawaiian culture.   I know this is something the team strives for and they should be commended for all of their efforts in helping to perpetuate the spirit of aloha.

Through the Art of Hula and through their upcoming community service tour, I’m confident that these girls will continue to make a positive impact!

JOANNE BANGLOS, Chairperson – 2011 Festival of Tables
St. Joseph of Cupertino School