Nowelo; Nowelo mau aku i ka na'auao - Perpetually seeing knowledge

Oli Geneology
Mary Kawena Pukui
Mary Kawena Pukui was recognized as the greatest living authority on Hawaiian culture and language during her lifetime. Born just before the turn of the century, she emerged during the pivotal change between the Hawai'i of ancient traditions and modern Hawai'i. With her contributions in song writing and language she was one of a select group dedicated to perpetuating the Hawaiian culture in the 20th century. She is probably most well-known for her joint authorship with Samuel Elbert of the Hawaiian Dictionary. She translated a considerable number of Hawaiian texts into English helping to spread knowledge about Hawaiian culture to a greater number of people. Mary Kawena Pukui is considered by many to be the catalyst which launched Hawaiian language and culture into its prominence and importance in modern day Hawai'i.

Ka'upena Wong began his serious training as a chanter after he graduated from Coe College in 1951. He started his apprenticeship with Mary Kawena Pukui in 1952. He studied oli, pa'i and hula under her for 12 years and later studied under hula kumu and master chanter Tom Hiona. An accomplished song writer as well as chanter, Ka'upena Wong won several song writing contests in the 60's and 70's. He has performed in numerous distinguished venues and recorded many chant and song albums. In 2005 Ka'upena was awarded the National Endowment for the Arts Lifetime Honors National Heritage Fellowship.
James Ka'upena Wong

Kalena Silva
Dr. Kalena Silva is Ka'upena Wong's most well-known student. Arguably one of the greatest chanters of his generation, he is successful in both ancient tradition and modern academia. A PhD in Ethnomusicology and Director of Ka Haka 'Ula O Ke'elikolani, the College of Hawaiian Language at the University of Hawai'i at Hilo, Dr. Kalena Silva continues to teach oli, language and Hawaiian culture as well as fulfilling his administrative duties. He is actively involved in the Hawaiian Immersion program and editor of Ka Ho'oilina, the bilingual journal of the Hawaiian Language Legacy Project. Kalena Silva is well respected as an authority in both oli and Hawaiian language and has performed throughout Polynesia and the Pacific Rim countries.

Liko Puha was awarded the Hawai'i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts Folk Apprenticeship grant to formally study oli with master chanter and kumu hula Dr. Kalena Silva. He was the first student in this program to be taught in Hawaiian using the ancient Hawaiian method of oral tradition. Liko completed his BA in Hawaiian Studies with emphasis in language and performing arts in 2004.
Liko Puha

To watch video of Dr. Kalena Silva teaching Liko Puha as part of the Hawai'i State Foundation of Culture and the Arts Apprenticeship Program, click on the left arrow on the Quicktime screen.
Kalena Silva & Liko Puha

All materials © Copyright 2014
Last Revised January 2014