In celebration of National Library Week 2013 (April 14 – 20), Hawaii’s public libraries will offer an array of free culturally-enriching programs featuring noted storytellers and performing artists through the month.
National Library Week is a time to highlight the value of libraries, librarians and library workers. “Communities Matter at your Library” is this year’s theme chosen by the American Library Association, which reinforces the fact that libraries are trusted places where everyone can gather to reconnect and reengage with each other to enrich and shape the community and address local issues.
All National Library Week programs are suitable for ages 5 and older unless noted otherwise. All children must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver.
Among the featured performers include award-winning Celtic harp player and highly-acclaimed storyteller Patrick Ball, award-winning slack key guitarists John Keawe and Jeff Peterson, local storyteller Ben Moffat, the dynamic traditional-style Japanese storytelling group Bento Rakugo, and luthier (maker of stringed instruments) Bob Gleason:
* “Celtic Harp and Story”
Patrick Ball is one of the world’s premier Celtic harp players and a highly-acclaimed storyteller in the Celtic tradition. Ball, a native Californian, artistically blends the exquisite sound of the rare, wire-strung Celtic harp with his intriguing tales of Ireland. The 32-string Celtic harp is said to have a fabled capacity to soothe its listeners, to beguile them, and to lead them into the realms of the imagination. He has recorded nine instrumental and three spoken word albums, which have sold more than one-half million copies internationally.
Ball, who has won national awards in both music and spoken word categories, will perform at four selected Big Island, Kauai, and Oahu libraries: April 2: 10 a.m. at Waialua Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Waialua Public Library; phone: 637-8286), 6:30 p.m. at Aina Haina Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Aina Haina Public Library; phone: 377-2456); April 3, 6 p.m. at Princeville Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the North Shore Library at Princeville; phone: 826-4310); and April 5, 3 p.m. at Kailua-Kona Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the Libraries, Kona; phone: 327-4327).
* A Tribute to Slack Key
John Keawe, a self-taught slack-key guitarist, is a multiple Na Hoku Hanohano and Hawaii Music Awards recipient and a contributing artist on Hawaii’s first Grammy winner, “Slack Key Guitar Volume 2” (2005).
Keawe will offer a tribute to the slack key style and include selections from the music of Raymond Kane, Leonard Quan, and others, in addition to presenting his original compositions at three selected Big Island, Maui and Oahu libraries: April 13, 2 p.m. at Hilo Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Hilo Public Library; phone: 933-8888); April 16, 6:30 p.m. at Kihei Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 875-6833); and April 20, 2 p.m. at Aiea Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Aiea Library; phone: 483-7333).
* The Slack Key Artistry of Jeff Peterson
Jeff Peterson, a multiple Grammy Award and Na Hoku Hanohano Award winner, is recognized as one of Hawaii’s most versatile musicians. His focus on Slack Key guitar, classical, and jazz music has allowed him to develop a unique and transcendent voice on the guitar while remaining deeply rooted in the traditions of his Hawaiian heritage.
Peterson will share his passion for the guitar in words and music at three selected Big Island, Kauai, and Maui libraries: March 25, 6:30 p.m. at North Kohala Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the North Kohala Library; phone: 889-6655); April 8, 6:30 p.m. at Makawao Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 573-8785); and April 9, 6 p.m. at Kapaa Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the Kapaa Public Library; phone: 821-4422).
* Stories on Stilts and Other Tall Tales
Storyteller Ben Moffat will present a storytelling experience using stilts, masks, movement and puppetry.
Moffat will spin stories from Europe, Asia, and the Americas including “The Barking Mouse,” “The Crane Wife,” How Roller Skates Were Invented,” and “The Giant in the Tiny House” at three selected Kauai and Oahu libraries: April 18, 10:30 a.m. at Kaneohe Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Kaneohe Library; phone: 233-5676); April 25,10:30 a.m. at Princeville Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the North Shore Library at Princeville; phone: 826-4310); and April 27, 11:30 a.m. at Hawaii State Library-Edna Allyn Room for Children (phone: 586-3510).
* Rakugo Bento
The dynamic group Bento Rakugo, led by artistic director Yasu Ishida, performs “Rakugo Bento” in the traditional Rakugo (Japanese translation: “fallen words”) storytelling style and adds a modern twist to the Japanese comedy. In Rakugo, the performer presents a comic story while sitting on a Japanese cushion throughout the entire performance, speaking all of the voices in the first person and third person. All stories will be spoken in English.
Experience “Rakugo Bento” at two selected Lanai and Oahu libraries: April 25, 2 p.m. at Lanai Public & School Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 565-7920); and April 27, 1 p.m. at Kapolei Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the Library, Kapolei; phone: 693-7050).
* Ukulele Design and Construction Demonstration
Bob Gleason, a Big Island owner and operator of a custom guitar and ukulele-making shop, will demonstrate how the ukulele is made: from the choice and curing of the wood, and through various construction processes, to applying the finish and caring for the instrument.
See the “birth” of a ukulele at two selected Kauai and Maui libraries: April 16, 1 p.m. at Hana Public & School Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 248-4848); and April 24, 6 p.m. at Princeville Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the North Shore Library at Princeville; phone: 826-4310).
* Chamber Music of Hawaii’s Honolulu Brass Quintet Performance
The Honolulu Brass Quintet, considered Hawaii’s premier brass quintet, will perform 3 p.m. April 2at Kihei Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 875-6833). The group will perform a sampling of musical selections followed by a discussion about music and the various brass instruments they play.
* Seminar: Music for a Lifetime
Local classical pianist and music educator Ralph Hedges will conduct a seminar on piano performance and technique 6 p.m. April 3 at Waipahu Public Library (phone: 675-0358).
Hedges will also discuss how music can play a vital role in traditional education by helping to improve mathematics and reading skills. Local music students will demonstrate some basic techniques on the electric piano.
* Stories of Hawaii and the World
Local storyteller and former HSPLS librarian Dave Del Rocco will present folktales from Hawaii and other places around the world such as Africa, Alaska, Italy, Laos, and the Philippines at 10:30 a.m. April 6 at Lahaina Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 662-3950).
* The Magic of Alan Arita
Magician Alan Arita will perform his popular Magic Show 10:30 a.m. April 13 at Kailua Public Library (sponsored by Friends of the Kailua Library; phone: 266-9911). Arita combines comedy, astonishing magic, and audience participation to intrigue and amaze one and all. This program is recommended for ages 3 and older.
* Folk Arts of China
Barbara Chung Ho will present an interactive and customized workshop on the folk arts of Chinese knotting and papercutting 6 p.m. April 18 at Wailuku Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 243-5766). The workshop is limited to 20 participants, ages 5 and older. Registration is required; call the Library to register.
* Hula Kui
Contemporary Hawaiian dance company Muolaulani, led by artistic director Michael Pili Pang, will bring to life Hawaiian rituals, myths, and legends of Hawaii and its rich culture 3 p.m. April 21 at Pearl City Public Library (sponsored by Friends of Pearl City Library; phone: 453-6566).
* Hawaiian and Jazz Music
Molokai musicians Norman DeCosta and Douglas Barnd will present a blend of Hawaiian and jazz music 3:30 p.m. April 24 at Molokai Public Library (sponsored by Maui Friends of the Library; phone: 553-1765).
Programs are subject to change. Performances are sponsored by the local Friends affiliates, unless noted otherwise, and are a production of the University of Hawaii at Manoa Statewide Cultural Extension Program with additional funding provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, and the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Contact the hosting library as soon as possible if a sign language interpreter or other special accommodation is needed.
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