Concert to reflect Hawaiian culture


Pasadena goes tropical this weekend with Hawaiian steel guitarist Henry Allen strumming in concert at St. Jane Francis Church hall.

Two local dance groups, Baltimore's Magic of Hawaii and the Hawai'i Aloha Lu'au Dancers of Pasadena, will join Allen tomorrow in a four-hour celebration of Hawaiian culture and entertainment.

"It's not too often we have people from Hawaii, especially major ++ artists, [in concert] on the East Coast," said Kas Nakamura, instructor at the Pasadena dance school, who also arranged the concert. "We're excited."

Some might recognize Allen as a guest salesman on QVC, where he promotes Hawaiian crafts, products and music, but he is also known in Hawaii and Japan for his smooth voice and skills on the ukulele and steel guitar. The latter was created in Hawaii and popularized by country-western music.

Allen has recorded multiple albums and played with several bands popular in Hawaii. He was appointed to Hawaii's Artists in Schools program.

While he is in the area this weekend, he will hold a free workshop for St. Jane Francis School's music students and two others on the ukulele and steel guitar. The two workshops will be open to the public ($40 for the ukulele session and $100 for the steel guitar class) at the Pasadena hula school.

Concertgoers will be treated to flowing Hawaiian music from Allen, fast-paced Polynesian dance and traditional storytelling hula.

A few of the dances will be performed while Allen sings, and the audience will learn a little hula when the dancers call audience members up to the stage.

Pineapple muffins, hula fruit salad, teriyaki chicken and other pupu treats or hors d'oeuvres will be on sale, along with books, music, several styles of leis, crafts and island chocolates formed in the shape of palm trees, shells and crabs. Proceeds will benefit the Pasadena school.

The concert tomorrow will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the church hall, 8499 Virginia Ave. in Riviera Beach. Tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door for adults, $10 and $12 for teens and those 65 and older, and $5 and $6 for children.

For more information or tickets, call Kas Nakamura at 410-437-1949.

Pub Date: 5/21/98

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