Hālau Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima


Hālau Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima

(The Royal ‘Ilima Blossom)

Nā Kumu Hula Vicky Holt Takamine and Jeffrey Kānekaʻiwilani Takamine

Pua Ali‘i ‘Ilima is the hālau hula (school of traditional Hawaiian dance) founded by Vicky Holt Takamine in 1977. The hālau was named by Vicky's kumu hula, Maiki Aiu Lake, and means the “Royal ‘Ilima Blossom” which alludes to Vicky's graduation from Maiki’s Papa ‘Ilima (the ‘ilima class), and her ancestry of Hawaiian royalty.  The hālau participates in cultural festivals and events throughout Hawaii, nationally, and internationally.

After completing an ʻūniki (graduating) ceremony led by his mother, Jeffrey Kānekaʻiwilani Takamine joined his mother as kumu (master teacher) for Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima. Nā kumu hula competed in the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival in 2024 for the first time in nearly 40 years.

Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima provides valuable support for the PAʻI Foundation, the PAʻI Arts & Culture Center, the PAʻI Arts Gallery (2019), and the PAʻI Performing Arts Center (2019). Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima provides traditional hula training for keiki (children), teens, and adults on an invitational basis; as well as providing introductory hula instruction for those who are looking for a more casual, beginner-level class. Haumāna (students) attend weekly classes.

Vicky Holt Takamine is a renowned kumu hula (master teacher of Hawaiian dance). She is recognized as a native Hawaiian leader for role as an advocate for social justice issues, the protection of native Hawaiian rights, and the natural and cultural resources of Hawai‘i. In 1975, Vicky ʻūniki (graduated through the rituals of hula) as a kumu hula from hula master Maiki Aiu Lake. Vicky established her own hālau, Pua Ali’i ‘Ilima, (school of Hawaiian dance) in 1977. Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima has extensions of her hālau hula on the island of Kaua‘i and in New York City. Vicky earned her BA & MA in dance ethnology from the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa.  In addition to teaching at her own school, Vicky was a lecturer at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa andLeeward Community College for more than 35 years.  

Jeffrey Kānekaiwilani Takamine graduated as Kumu hula through the ‘uniki rituals of hula from Vicky Holt Takamine in 2007. While constantly immersed in the hula lifestyle since birth, he formally began classes at the age of 14, began dancing professionally at 16, and has assisted his mother with teaching since he was 17. Recognized early on as a fine chanter, he was invited to participate in the State Foundation of Hawaiian Culture and Arts’ Folk Arts Apprenticeship program to study oli with master chanter and Kumu hula Kalani Akana. While primarily under the tutelage of his mother, Kumu Vicky, he has had the opportunity to study in various settings with other Kumu Hula such as Pat Namaka Bacon, Robert Cazimero, John Kaimikaua, and John Keola Lake. In addition, he has participated in numerous international cultural exchange programs through the University of Hawaii. Over the years, Jeffrey has established a reputation of creativity with a unique style of teaching and is acknowledged by members of the hula community to be a hula authority of the next generation.

Pua Aliʻi ʻIlima hula kahiko at the Merrie Monarch 2024


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