For Remembering Napua, Amy Hanaiali’i personally chose each song as a tribute to her grandmother Napua Woodd, the biggest influence in her life as an entertainer. Napua lived on her own land in an era in which she wasn’t allowed to speak Hawaiian or dance hula – it was illegal.
As an original Royal Hawaiian hula dancer, she was asked to be one of the first set of entertainers to perform in the Hawaiian Room at the Lexington Hotl in 1939 with Uncle Ray Kinney. She choreographed the show for many years. Known for her comedy hula, she also starred in the famous Hellzapoppin on Broadway.
From New York, she toured across America to Hollywood. At Perry’s Studios, she became the quintessential choreographer for anything Hawaiian in the motion picture industry. During this time, she starred in and choreographed the famous Harry Owens Show.
The songs in this collection are those that she taught to her hula dancers.
Amy is grateful to continue her family’s tradition of entertaining with her new showroom opening this year called “The Hawaiian Room” at the Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria Resort on Maui.
Please join us in Remembering Napua.