Kapiʻolani Community College will hold the 4th Eisa Drum Festival on Saturday, May 17, 6–9 p.m on the Great Lawn. Food booths will be available from 4:30 p.m. This event is free and open to the public.
Eisa is a form of dance and drumming unique to the people of Okinawa. It is an exhilarating combination of singing, chanting, dancing and drumming. It originally had an important religious function of giving repose to the dead. In Okinawa and Hawaiʻi, Eisa continues to be performed at bon dances. This year, traditional and contemporary styles of drumming will be featured, along with karate and lions.
The first three festivals have been described as “magical” and event planners are hoping to continue the magic this year. Performers include Chinagu Eisa Hawaiʻi, Hawaiʻi Okinawa Creative Arts, Young Okinawans of Hawaiʻi and Okinawa Shorin-Ryu Karate. Special guests from Okinawa include the acclaimed chanter, producer and musician Daiichi Hirata, as well as the 2011 Worldwide Eisa Festival competition winners of Kajimaai.
Food will be prepared by Kapiʻolani CC’s culinary program. The Hawaiʻi Farm Bureau will make available some of its popular vendors like Bonfire Pizza and the Pig and the Lady. A detailed menu will be posted on Eisa Festival’s facebook page. Alcohol is strictly prohibited at this event.
Enjoy an evening under the stars. Bring lawn chairs to sit on, and blankets and jackets for the night chill. Up to date information on program, schedule, parking, maps and food items on sale will be posted online.
To see videos and photos from the 3rd Eisa Festival, visit the website.