Kumu Kahua Theatre Presents Pele M? , A Play About The Goddess Pele And Her Bawdy Adventures On Kaua‘I!


Two visions of Pele-honua-mea, Puamana Crabbe (Left) and Lindsey Shannon (Right). Kumu Kahua Theatre presents Pele M?, adapted by John H.Y. Wat, Laurel Nakanishi, & Kennly Asato. Based on the book “Pele M?: Legends of Pele from Kaua‘i” by Frederick Wichman, Pele M? opens Thursday, January 10, 2008, and runs Thursdays thru Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m. Call 536-4441 for tickets and info.

HONOLULU, HI: Hawaiian demigods abound when Pele M?, plays at Kumu Kahua Theatre, 46 Merchant Street in downtown Honolulu. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm., from January 10th through February 10th, 2008.

Adapted by John Wat, Laurel Nakanishi, and Kennly Asato, Pele M? is a narrative theater adaptation based on the book "Pele M?: Legends of Pele from Kaua`i" (Bamboo Ridge Press, 2001) by Frederick Wichman. The first act is a series of stories about Pele and her companions, beginning with Pele's arrival on Kaua`i, in a canoe pursued by her angry older sister, Na-Maka-O-Kaha`i, goddess of the sea. Pele herself is a refugee from her homeland, which she has set afire. Also included in the first act are several stories about the pig demigod, Kamapua`a. The second act focuses on the risqué love triangle between Pele, her sister Hi`iaka and Kaua`i chief Lohiau. Although Pele is most often associated with the Big Island, these stories remind us that the Pele legends have a strong link to the island of Kaua‘i. Pele M? was originally performed at Mid-Pacific School of the Arts. It also toured to the annual Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland.

Kumu Kahua board president, John H.Y. Wat will direct the production, with set design by Kelly Konecko, costume design by Dusty Behner. Jason Ellinwood is the assistant director and stage manager.  The cast features Kumu Veterans M.J. Gonzalvo, Jessica Haworth, Tafa’i Silipa, Aito Simpson Steele, and first time Kumu actors Amy Ching-Brouwers, Puamana Crabbe, Stephanie Farnum, Michael Grey, Anne Holloway, Andre Medina, Michael Reyes, Karissa Samples, Lindsey Shannon, and Tina Zeng.

Kumu Kahua Theatre is an air-conditioned, intimate 100-seat performance space; Patrons are strongly advised to purchase tickets in advance as individual performances do sell out.  Performances are at 8pm Thursday through Saturday, and at 2pm on Sunday afternoons.  Tickets can be purchased with a credit card by calling 536-4441, or by visiting our box office between 11am and 3pm Monday through Friday.  Ticket prices range from $5 to $16.  Tickets are on sale now.  For more information about this and other productions, or to buy tickets online, visit www.KumuKahua.org.

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