New Polynesian Dance Academy Opens in Waimea

Media Release:

A new opportunity for dancers of all levels to experience Hula and Polynesian Dance is now available, with the establishment of ‘Alohi Polynesian Dance Academy for the Performing Arts, in Waimea.  Classes are offered for both wāhine and kāne dancers, from keiki as young as three, to tūtū 65 and older, in a convenient location off Mamalahoa Highway, next to Napa Auto Parts.  Special pricing is available for registration by August 15.


The academy’s curriculum is grounded in the learning of fundamental dance steps in three Polynesian dance disciplines: Hula, Tahitian and Maori.  Beginners and “Hula Le’a” recreational classes offer a good workout and fun cultural experience, while more structured and rigorous Intermediate and Advanced classes help students improve and move forward.  Dancers who qualify for the Performing Troupe receive specialized and intensive training, to take their talents to the next level.

In addition to dance, a Beginners Drumming class is planned, as well as regularly scheduled kani ka pila (musicians’ jam sessions), ‘ukulele lessons and other activities and workshops throughout the year.  A small retail area will offer Polynesian arts and crafts, Academy logo wear and gifts.  Led by founder/director Kumu Hula Lani Isaacs, a lifelong dancer, teacher and choreographer, the ‘Alohi Polynesian Dance Academy is unique in its wide variety of programs, open to all.

“My daughters grew up with Polynesian hula as part of their life,” said Isaacs, “and now my grandchildren are coming up and learning to dance and play drums.  The Academy is an educational environment, where we can share what we have learned over the last 40 years and pass that knowledge and experience on to others.“

“No matter who you are—if you’re just curious about hula or want to connect with the culture, if you’re one of our kūpuna who danced when you were young, if you have children you’d like to expose to hula or if you’re an experienced dancer looking for a performance troupe—our new school is a place you can come and feel welcome,” said Isaacs

The Academy is located just off Mamalahoa Highway (19), across from Kamuela Liquor Store (the last right turn before the lane ends, eastbound toward Hamakua).  The fall session runs from August 5 to December 17.  Classes range in price from complimentary (for tūtū 65 and up) to $60 per month.  The Academy offers one free introductory class (call to sign up); plus waived Registration Fee ($25) for sign-ups prior to August 15, and a 20% off Introductory Rate for Teen and Adult Classes.  (See schedule below).  To register or for more information, call 887-0369, email: or visit

‘Alohi Polynesian Dance Academy Sample Class Schedule:


11 a.m.-12 noon.  Hula Le’a (just for fun)

5-6 p.m.  Tūtū Hula Le’a (FREE, 65+)

6-7 p.m.  Adult Hula I

7-9 p.m.  Adult Tahitian I


11 a.m.-12 noon.  Hula Le’a (just for fun)

5-6 p.m.  Tūtū Hula Le’a (FREE, 65+)

6-8 p.m.  Adult Level II (Combination Hula & Tahitian)


4-5 p.m.  Teens 14+, Combination Hula & Tahitian, Levels I and II (Wāhine)

5-6 p.m.  Teens 14+, Combination Hula & Tahitian, Level sI and II (Kāne)


9-10 a.m.  Keiki 3-6, Combination Hula & Tahitian, Levels I and II

10-11 a.m.  Keiki 7-13, Combination Hula & Tahitian, Levels I and II

10 a.m.-12 noon.  Keiki 7-13, Combination Hula & Tahitian, Level III

11 a.m.-3 p.m.  Performing Troupe/Advanced

3:00-4:30 p.m.  Beginners Drumming (students only)

4:00-4:45 p.m. Beginners ‘Ukulele

 ‘Alohi Polynesian Dance Academy: 64-1013 Mamalahoa Hwy. , Bldg. 2, Suite 2, Kamuela, HI  96743

For more information or to register, visit, or call 887-0369.

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