Ka Lei Hāweoʻula O Ke Ao Hou

AHSTF logo2

“The lei of the new beginnings of the new realm.”

Hāweoʻula is the red sunlight you see in the morning at dawn. The Hawaiian people were initially afraid of the red sunlight coming from the east because it resembled blood. As they got closer to this mysterious light they soon realized that the light was a beautiful harbinger for the beginning of the new day.

Makana Waikiki and Kuʻuhiapo Jeong, two of the students who will be traveling to Edinburgh in August 2016, chose this as the theme for our trip.

Symbolically, this trip represents the start of something new for our school, the students, and the Hawaiian culture.  It will be a “first” in many aspects:  the first time the school has travelled off island to share a Hōʻike presentation, the first Hawaiian language presentation at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the first hula presentation at the festival, the first Kamehameha campus to be represented at the festival.  For many of our students it will be their first trip to Europe.

As we look to the many tasks necessary to prepare for the journey, it is not difficult to feel overwhelmed and fearful.  But as our kūpuna watched the foreboding red sky gradually lighten into day, we look to this experience as the dawn of a new chapter of life and learning.

The logo (both versions) depicts Hina, the wife of Hakalanileo of Hilo, watching from the cliffs of Hāʻupu on Molokaʻi where she has been abducted by the chief Kapepeʻekauila.  Below, the canoes of her sons, Nīheu and Kana and their warriors arrive to rescue her and battle against Kapepeʻekauila in a conflict that will bring the end of an ancient communal culture and solidify the kapu system as the dominant social order.

Read on to find out more about the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the American High School Theater Festival, and the original Hawaiian opera the school will take to the festival.