Hundreds of dancers to take the stage for Kona Dance and Performing Arts’ annual show

  • Kona Dance and Performing Arts' annual show will be Saturday and Sunday at the Kahilu Theatre in Waimea. (Daryl Salmo/Courtesy Photo)
  • Kona Dance and Performing Arts' annual show will be Saturday and Sunday at the Kahilu Theatre in Waimea. (Daryl Salmo/Courtesy Photo)

KEALAKEKUA — For their spring concert this year, Kona Dance and Performing Arts has two nights, 200 dancers and big expectations.

“It’s going to be epic,” artistic director Amanda Trusty said.


Kona Dance and Performing Arts’ third annual dance concert will take place at 6 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday at the Kahilu Theatre in Waimea, and is a celebration of all the work every dancer and instructor at the studio has done in the past year.

Last summer, Kona Dance and Performing Arts expanded their studio, classes and number of instructors, bringing the total number of children performing in the season-ending recital to 200. The number of performers this year called for the show to be split in two.

“Both shows are totally different. Saturday night is all of our intro classes, and then Sunday is all the keiki classes,” Trusty said. “If we had done all of the pieces in one show, the show would have been four hours long.”

The theme of this year’s show is “Tributes and Trailblazers,” and the performances are tributes to the artists who have inspired the dancers at the studio.

“One of the pieces is based on Van Gogh, and then other pieces are inspired by Elvis, George Gershwin, Fred Astaire, you name it,” Trusty said. “I always want the theme to be an educational thing for the kids.”

All the choreography for the show was done by Trusty and Kona Dance and Performing Arts instructors Debra McGee, Katy Raczkowski, Alexis Gaines, Miho Morinoue, Angelia Han, Michael Sato, Jaquelynn Collier and Grace Branham.

Trusty said the cast of Aloha Theatre’s production of “Mamma Mia!” will also be on stage Saturday night to perform parts of the show. Trusty starred in “Mamma Mia!” this past winter with the lead role of Donna.

“We like to include outside organizations when we can,” Trusty said. “There’s a lot of people that didn’t get to see it because it sold out so quickly, so this will be nice.”

The styles of dance on display from Kona Dance and Performing Arts will be musical theatre, contemporary, breakdance, tap, jazz, hip-hop and ballet.

“I’m really excited to see the contemporary pieces because I think they’re going to be really innovative and new compared to what we’ve done in the past, along with the hip-hop numbers,” dancer Katie Wickersham said. “And I think for this island, we don’t see a lot of that. Contemporary and hip-hop are things we don’t get a lot of here, so it’s going to be fun to watch.”

One thing the dancers at Kona Dance and Performing Arts want to stress to the public is the performances are not just for family members.

Trusty said, as a nonprofit, the studio relies on the support of the community to be able to continue educating young dancers, and they’ve created this show for everyone to enjoy.


“You’ll be able to see people having a lot of fun on stage,” instructor Gaines said. “Like, my friends for example, they don’t have a kid in the show. Do they really want to see a dance recital? And the answer is, if you want to see a fun show, yeah, you do.”

Info: For tickets to “Tributes and Trailblazers,” visit Tickets are $33/$23 for adults and $13 for children 16 and under.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Star-Advertiser's TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email