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  • Writer's pictureBilly V

Konawaena High School Alma Mater Recording

Konawaena Alumni gathered in Honolulu to record Konawaena Alma Mater

(Honolulu, Hawaii) - From Susan Morigawara Suzuki: Band Program has been non-existant from Konawaena High School for some time. Getting it back has been an ongoing endeavor, but it takes many steps and time to get the right people to give their thumbs up "go" for the program and more. No Chorus program either. Current Principal Shawn Suzuki (Susanʻs husband) knows the value of the band program and is in full support, but once again the process is long to get it back. One of the many effects not having the band program has had, is the non-use of the Alma Mater. There is no band which means no playing of the Alma Mater after school events and athletic events. So with the Alma Mater out of use, it has kind of gone by the wayside. The football team picked up the pieces and was singing it at the end of football games, but it sounded more like a chant than singing according to Susan. So she has been re-introducing it into the elementary (she teaches at Konawaena Elem) and they are familiar with it, but at the high school level, not so much. Some of us alumni are getting together to bring it back. Back in the 80ʻs and portion of the 90ʻs, Konawaena took a page from the Kamehameha Schools and also started a song contest. We used to sing one song usually in Hawaiian, then the Alma Mater was our second song. Both would be judged individually. Classes sang it in 4 part harmonies. We are also bringing that back as Donald and Virginia Isbell had arranged the music. During that time Chorus teacher Mary Jane Kahanamoku worked with all of the classes to assist them in their musical endeavors. Mrs. Kahanamoku was the choral music teacher for more than 20 years at Konawaena. We are hopeful to bring the Alma Mater to a sense of pride for the current and future students of KHS, like it was for us as we grew up and went to school in Kealakekua back in our day. Hail Konawaena!

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