KAHULUI - One of Maui's favorite family events returns to the Maui Arts & Cultural Center on Sunday, June 23, when some of Hawaii's best slack key guitar players come to perform at the annual Ki Ho'alu Festival in the A&B Amphitheater.
It's a full afternoon of beautiful and melodious Hawaiian music, with continuous performances from 1 to 7 p.m. Admission is free.
The lineup of musicians and recording artists this year includes Kevin & Ikaika Brown, Danny Carvalho, John Cruz, Hapa, Stephen Inglis, David Kahiapo, George Kahumoku Jr., Dwight Kanae, Donald Kaulia, Dennis Kamakahi, Walter Keale, George Kuo, Bobby Moderow, Glen Smith, Paul Togioka and Alani "Yuki" Yamauchi from Tokyo.
This year’s lineup of musicians and recording artists includes Dennis Kamakahi (pictured), Kevin & Ikaika Brown, Danny Carvalho, John Cruz, Hapa, Stephen Inglis, David Kahiapo, George Kahumoku Jr., Dwight Kanae, Donald Kaulia, Walter Keale, George Kuo, Bobby Moderow, Glen Smith, Paul Togioka and Alani “Yuki” Yamauchi from Tokyo.
The festival also features crafters, displays of made-in-Hawaii products and "ono-licious" food from Maui eateries, all in an informal, local-style atmosphere, making it easy to linger all afternoon.
The music is performed from the stage of Yokouchi Pavilion out over the lawn. Festival-goers are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs, blankets or lauhala mats, relax on the lawn and fully enjoy the laid-back music by famed guitar players.
This is a family-friendly event; all generations can enjoy the slack key guitar tradition, with both new music and classic favorites.
Ki ho'alu, translating literally in Hawaiian as "loosen the key" to indicate the tuning in slack key guitar technique, is a musical tradition dating back to 19th century paniolo who played around the campfire after work on the ranches.
Slack key has now become known as one of the world's great acoustic guitar methods, especially since Hawaiian music was recognized as a category of its own in the Grammy Awards.
For more information, call the MACC Box Office at 242-SHOW or visit www.MauiArts.org.