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Contestants sought for female Hawaiian falsetto contest in Hawaii

By Staff | Feb 6, 2020

“I’m honored to be joining the prestigious tradition as the namesake to the first wahine falsetto contest,” said Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey, who has represented Maui as an OHA trustee since January 2012.

KAPALUA – The Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey Leo Ha’iha’i Falsetto Contest in April will be the first female falsetto competition in the state.

Conventionally a kane (male) competition, Maui leads the way in a new tradition, highlighting another beautiful facet of Hawaiian music.

The inaugural contest is set to premiere at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua’s opening night event at Celebration of the Arts on Friday, April 10. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

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

“Physically, it seems more challenging for a male to sing in higher octaves, but control and pronunciation is what the judges are looking for, in addition to being pleasant to the ear,” said event Coordinator Daryl Fujiwara.

“We invite all wahine who love Mele Hawaii to join us at the Celebration of the Arts April 10. Kick off your Merrie Monarch week with us in Kapalua.”

Celebration of the Arts will convene Hawaii artisans, educators, cultural practitioners, speakers and entertainers for hands-on art, demonstrations, films, cultural panels, music and dance.

“In its 29th year, the Celebration of the Arts gathers the finest traditional artisans and contemporary artists to share and discuss na mea Hawaii 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 advisor and creator of Celebration of the Arts.

Contestants are sought for the falsetto contest. Interested individuals should apply with a demo at the following link: docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScJYyh0plhc5wkpALkT9FhKssc6NH6dJ4tGtjQ30jnCbgvFg/viewform?usp=sf_link.

In addition to awards and prizes, the first place singer will receive $600 cash. The second and third place finishers will receive $400 and $300, respectively.

Contestants are heavily judged on ‘olelo Hawaii, so a special award will be given for Hawaiian language.

Grand prize will be a professional recording (four songs) sponsored by Napua Greig of Pihana Productions, Michael Casil of I-Vibe Productions and Wailau Ryder.

A professional entertainer and recording artist, “Hulu” won the 2014 Na Hoku Hanohano Award for female vocalist of the year.

In addition, she has been featured on many projects and compilations – most recently on the album “Lei Nahonoapi’ilani,” recording the song “Ka Wai ‘O Eleile.”

“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.”

Contest sponsors include Festivals of Aloha, Pihana Productions, I-Vibes Productions, Wailau Ryder, Lokahi Pacific and The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua.