Na Mele’s First Location HD Production Airing Monday at 7:30PM on PBS

Halekulani’s House Without a Key Provides Stunning Venue for Na Mele’s First Location HD Production Airing Monday at 7:30PM

The PBS Hawaii series Na Mele: Traditions in Hawaiian Song has recorded and preserved in perpetuity performances by many of Hawaii ’s musical legends. Throughout the years, these musical treasures were recorded in PBS Hawaii ’s studio in Manoa. Now, seven years into the series, Robert Pennybacker , VP Creative Services, says PBS Hawaii is ready to take Na Mele in a new, exciting direction. “We want to document not only the treasures of traditional Hawaiian music but also an iconic, cherished local experience.”


The first Na Mele location selected is a place that has had special meaning for local residents, as well as visitors, since the golden era of Waikiki . Halekulani’s House Without a Key is an experience that embodies a beautiful tradition according to Pennybacker. “Hearing authentic Hawaiian music in the classic stylings and harmonies of the Kahau’anu Lake Trio, with two of the islands’ most gifted hula soloists, and the sun setting on two of the more renowned landmarks in the world (Diamond Head and Waikiki Beach) – well, it just doesn’t get any better than that”, he said. Those dancers are none other than Kanoe Miller and Debbie Nakanelua-Richards. The featured trio, very much in the Kahau’anu Lake tradition, is Pa’ahana (consisting of Pakala Fernandes on bass & vocals; Kaipo Kukahiko on guitar & vocals; and Douglas Tolentino on ‘ukuele and vocals).

Also featured are reminiscences by legendary dancer Beverly Noa, who entertained at the Halekulani with singer Ed Kenney in the late 70s and early 80s.

“We are honored to be the first destination to host the PBS Hawaii series Na Mele in HD,” said Gerald Glennon, general manager of Halekulani. “House Without a Key is truly the gathering place of Oahu , an iconic oasis celebrating the timeless essence and spirit of aloha as experienced through traditional Hawaiian music.”


The entire production was done with high definition technology from the HD Sony cameras used on location, through post-production and broadcast. Pennybacker is Executive Producer. Other crewmembers include Production Manager Paul Hayashida ; Director of Photography Glenn Yamamoto ; Editor Michael Powell ; HD Finishing by Daryl Harada ; Associate Producer Derek Hoppe ; and sound recording and mixing by Gaylord Holomalia.

Hawaiian Airlines is the title underwriter for the Na Mele series on PBS Hawaii . The premiere of Na Mele: House without a Key will be Monday, February 23rd at 7:30PM on all PBS Hawaii channels, including Oceanic Time Warner HD Channel 1010 and the PBS Hawaii over-the-air HD broadcast channel 11.1.

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