Oahu visitors can experience the music and dance Hawaiians enjoyed before the arrival of white settlers at an event on Feb. 1.
“Pre-contact Hawaii: Hula Kahiko, Mele & Oli” will feature an evening of stories, ancient hula, chants and songs at the Mission Houses Museum in Honolulu’s Capitol Historic District. The site preserves two of the oldest houses in the islands, built and used by Christian missionaries who arrived in the early 1800s.
The celebration gets underway with a free panel discussion from 5 to 6 p.m., followed by cultural performances. Advance tickets, which cost $30, are available online or by calling (808) 447-3926.
Four other presentations on the evolution of Hawaiian music will follow later in the year.
The Hawaiian Mission Houses Historic Site & Archives (553 S. King St., Honolulu) is recognized as the place where missionaries and royalty first collaborated to develop Hawaiian as a written language. It maintains one of the world’s largest collection of books in Hawaiian.