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Anthems Afterglow

On August 15, Na Leo Lani sang the Star Spangled Banner and Hawaiʻi Ponoʻī at Ala Moana Hotel as part of the opening ceremony of the 2022 training conference of the National Association of State Directors of Veterans Affairs. It was a brisk but enjoyable performance — made even better by our afterglow breakfast at Liliha Bakery.

What could be better than a morning gig followed by coffee and cream puffs?

Talent night

In the spirit of summer fun, the ladies of Na Leo Lani had a blast in July showing off hidden talents in a members-only mini talent show. Entertainments included impromptu quartets, poignant folk tunes, a dramatic reading, and more. See below for pics of some of the evening’s entertainments.

We did it!

After months of rehearsals and many challenges along the way, we sailed through our competition recording yesterday with full-throated joy. What a journey it has been!

Thank you so much to our director, Christine Wee; to the Region 12 recording team of Mary Mamer, Donna Prochazka, Randy Sahae, and Joanna Davis, who flew all the way out to Hawai’i for a quick, 48-hour whirlwind of lights, camera, and action; to the men of Sounds of Aloha who volunteered hours of their day to assist with the event; and to our Vice-President, Kristi Dagdagan, who organized an elegant and bounteous Afterglow. Each of you was masterful in your attention to detail, planning, and performance. Our kids, too, rose to the occasion, tirelessly putting in hours of work to set up and clean up the party. The delicious food and beautiful setting of the Afterglow made for the perfect ending to our 2022 contest experience.

Most of all, thank you to our amazing chorus members, who stayed together through two and half long years of Zoom rehearsals, masked rehearsals, and rehearsals in unusual and less than ideal settings. As the lyrics of one of our contest songs goes, “There is a feeling deep in my heart . . . It’s a feeling heavenly!” Uniting in harmony truly is heavenly. Thanks, ladies, for making it happen.

Na Leo Lani, Pure Nerves, Rhapsody, and the Region 12 recording team

Rehearsing in person again

Na Leo Lani is back to in-person rehearsals! We kicked off our return with a socially distanced approach — two sectionals of basses and leads in one room and baris and tenors in the other. It made for interesting harmonies and a great opportunity to hear each others’ parts for the first time while fine-tuning our own.

Interested in joining us or simply sitting in on a rehearsal to see what our chorus is about? See the “Join Us” page for current rehearsal location, times, and Covid guidelines.

Leads and basses keepin’ it on the down low. The week’s rehearsal theme was “red white and blue” in recognition of the Presidents Day holiday.

Tenors and baris, together at last!

In person again from next week onward

Rehearsals are returning to in-person format from February 17 onward. For now, to keep numbers consistent for social distancing planning purposes, we are not encouraging guest participation. However, please contact the chorus at naleolanichorus [at] gmail.com if you would like to come check out our practices and learn more about the art of women’s four-part barbershop harmony.

In-person rehearsals will commence on February 17 and continue for the foreseeable future on Thursdays from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Rooms 4 & 5, 1404 University Ave, Honolulu, HI 96822. In keeping with Hawai`i state public health guidelines, the chorus requires that all in-person rehearsal attendees — members, visitors, and prospective members alike — show proof of completed Covid-19 vaccination and follow rehearsal protocols (singing with masks on, maintain social distance as indicated by our director, and taking breaks for fresh air). See you all soon!

In the meantime, enjoy this Valentine’s Day pic of our most recent (and hopefully last for a long while!) online rehearsal.

Happy Valentines Day 2022!

Back on line but having a good time

Thanks to the rapid spread of the omicron variant, we went back on line in January and will continue holding online rehearsals on Zoom on Wednesday nights from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. through February 9.

Please contact naleolanichorus [at] gmail.com for Zoom link:

  • When we do return in person (hopefully from February 17 onward!), our rehearsals will be on Thursday evenings from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. In keeping with state public health guidelines, we require all attendees of our in-person rehearsals to show a one-time proof of vaccination against Covid-19 and sing masked (a singer’s mask, N-95, or KN-95 mask is preferred if you have one). Thank you for your understanding as we work to ensure that all of our members, young and old, can sing together in the safest feasible conditions.

Until then, we are having a good time online. In addition to working on the songs that we will be singing for our SAI International contest recording in May, we enjoy lots of laughs competing with each other for the best interpretation of our weekly themes. This week’s theme was “what’s your Chinese Zodiac animal?”

We look forward to welcoming visitors and prospective members again, so please email us at naleolanichorus@gmail.com if you would like to join us. 

Sheep, monkeys, rabbits, tigers, horses, and more!

Christmas cheer

At our last rehearsal before our holiday break, the chorus enjoyed an impromptu performance by the Friends quartet. The pandemic has made it hard for Friends to get together over the past couple of years, so they had a great time hamming it up with “Let It Snow.” (Excerpt below.) Afterwards, the chorus did a few lightning rounds of Christmas favorites, from “Veni Veni” to “Ovah Da Pali.” Warmest wishes to all for a safe and healthy holiday season. We look forward to resuming rehearsals in January.

Friends quartet: Vera, JoAnne, Rosie, and Carole
Decking the halls, or at least our heads, with holiday finery.

Rehearsing “in the mask”

After twenty months on Zoom, the ladies of Na Leo Lani are thrilled to be back together live and in person! Rehearsing with masks on wasn’t so hard for us to get used to — after all, as any fan of Darlene Rogers’s “Sing, Baby, Sing” warm-ups knows, singers are supposed to “stay in the mask”!

Here’s what singing “in the mask” looks like from warm-ups to sectionals, plus one group photo with our actual smiling faces. 🙂

Would you like to sing with us? Please see our “Join Us” page.

Harmonizing again

Na Leo Lani has begun rehearsing in person again! For the past several weeks, our singers have been gathering for special weekend rehearsals on the front lanai of Director Christine Wee’s house in preparation for a live recording in support of the Hawai’i Theatre. The recording will be part of a benefit concert organized by the Sounds of Aloha Chorus, and will feature SOA, multiple quartet performances, and a special guest performance by Na Leo Lani. Stay tuned for details about when the benefit concert will be aired and how to watch.

In the meantime, here’s what live rehearsals look like in November in Hawai’i — masked up and in the open air:

Masked but marvelous — baris and basses hard at work.
Leads and basses, mostly off-paper!