Oscar Wilde regarded the theatre as the greatest of all art forms. According to Wilde, the theatre is “the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another, the sense of what it is to be a human being.” The Kahilu Theatre, under the leadership of artistic and managing director Tim Bostock, carries on this great tradition and announces its 2014-2015 presenting season, which runs from September to June. In addition to Kahilu’s education programs and community rentals, Kahilu is also a presenting theatre, meaning it hosts visiting companies whose productions have been developed elsewhere and brought into the theatre.
The lineup includes a Hawaiian Music Series, Dance Series, Classical Series, Jazz and Roots Series, Film Series, Theatre Series, Applause from Kahilu, Family Fun Days, as well as 14 youth shows and nine free shows and events.
“In the coming season we have some wonderful musicians from around the world, tremendous dance from the East Coast and world-class Hawaiian music from right around the corner,” Bostock said. “We are also expanding our afterschool classes, and our youth shows, and our partnerships with other arts organizations in our community. We are very grateful for the state grant to re-roof and renovate the building.”
Beginning the season at 7 p.m. Sept. 20 is John Cruz and Family. With deep Hawaii Island roots, this will be a rare chance to see the Cruz family jam together and talk-story. Concert attendees will also have an opportunity to enjoy the opening exhibit in the Kahilu galleries from the Paniolo Preservation Society and attend the unveiling of the renovated lobby and bar.
Hawaii Public Radio gets in the act with Applause From The Kahilu. HPR will broadcast concerts featuring Hawaii Island artists through music, song, and talk story. These 90-minute shows will be recorded with a live audience and will be broadcast the following weeks on HPR. The first show, on Sunday, features guest artists Ekolu Mea Nui with Sonny Lim, Kevin Kealoha and Kunia Galdeira, performance poet Michele Dalton from Puna, and paniolo music from Willie-Joe Camara and Damien de Mello. Bostock hosts the show on air and on stage. Additional shows are scheduled for Sept. 2, and Nov. 16.
At 7 p.m. Oct. 23, the Stars of the American Ballet will shine with New York Ballet star Daniel Ulbricht and a full company of principal dancers. With top-notch choreography, their mission is to see all parts of this country entertained, educated, lifted up and inspired by the art of ballet and great dancing, delivered to anyone, anywhere who wishes to share this experience.
Coming up Nov. 20 to 23 is the Waimea Ukulele and Slack Key Guitar Festival and Institute. This event brings together artists and audience members who wish to immerse themselves in Hawaiian music. The opening concert will include an open invitation to all in the community to join the masters on stage, in the popular “Kanikapila” event.
The Harlem Quartet is scheduled to perform at 7 p.m. Feb. 12. The string quartets most recent recording, Hot House, won multiple Grammy Awards in 2014, with compositions such as “Mozart Goes Dancing.” The group has performed for the White House as well as completed a successful tour of South Africa.
“The Brave,” a theatrical dance performance by Massive Dance Company of Auckland, New Zealand takes the stage on March 13. Eight men take on a performance piece to honor the people their lives both past and present. Combining true confessions with raw athleticism, the men in The Brave find strength through family, love, loss, fear, hope, belonging and brotherhood.
Finishing off the season is “Godspell” which runs June 17 to 21. This is a community production led by the Kahilu Theatre Youth Troupe, of the smash hit Broadway musical based on parables in the Gospel of Matthew.
The future of the Kahilu Theatre looks bright according to Mimi Kerley, President of the Kahilu Theatre Foundation board of directors.
“It continues to be a magical time of transition as we regain our footing after our intermission during the 2012-2013 season,” Kerley said. “Our comeback season in 2013-2014 was amazing. The support we received from our community was unprecedented. We are forever grateful for the enthusiasm and love our supporters have for this theatre.”
The theatre is currently upgrading their facility with a $1.5 million grant by the State Legislature.
“We are making improvements that will enhance the theatre experience and provide the facility with all the maintenance it requires to stay in operation for many years to come,” Kerley said. “Finally, the board is excited to say that, in concert with the staff, we have created a strategic plan and we have set our eyes on a beautiful five-year vision of a community-focused, education driven arts center that is Kahilu Theatre.
This season is currently on sale at kahilutheatre.org or by calling the Kahilu Theatre Box Office at 885-6868. All show dates and times are subject to change.