For quite a few years the Sounds of Aloha proudly provided music for the annual Mayor's Memorial Day Ceremony at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Pūowaina (Punchbowl). The COVID pandemic interrupted that tradition for the past two years, and we resorted to a virtual tribute. But we were pleased this year that the event was back on!
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After two years of lock-down, on May 7, 2022 the Sounds of Aloha Chorus brought back its Annual Show! This year's production was an original musical melodrama, a western comedy called "Rhinestone Rides Again!" The audience was invited to dress in western garb themselves and, like in any good melodrama, cheer for the chivalrous hero Rhinestone and his horse Bruce, boo and hiss for the dastardly villain Black Bart, and sigh for the plucky heroine Sweet Sue. Joined by guest performers Miguel Cadoy, Stephanie Conching, Sophie LeFebvre, Peggy Wagner, and Plaid-itude, a women's barbershop quartet formed just for the occasion, the chorus guys and quartets H4, Funny Bones, and VHF spun a yarn full of great songs and laughs.
For the second year in a row, Sounds of Aloha quartets delivered safely sung musical messages for a Valentine’s Day still not entirely free of COVID. Check out photos of some highlights below. While we delivered fewer Singing Valentines this year than in past years unaffected by COVID, somehow every delivery was a memorable success -- for sender, recipient, and singers alike! We so enjoyed contributing to the celebrations people were having.
Here are couple of testimonials from our customers:
On December 11, 2022, the Sounds of Aloha were thrilled to return to performing live and in person after a long COVID hiatus that had limited us to virtual performances! We were honored to sing Christmas songs for a relatively small, distanced, and masked audience of true music lovers at the Lutheran Church of Honolulu.
We are grateful to the church and its Director of Music and Liturgy, Scott Fikse, who runs a formidable music program there -- and also is an experienced and talented barbershopper! In fact, we couldn't resist calling him up to sub in as bass and sing a song with one of our quartets, 19th Avenue. You can watch the whole performance by clicking on any of the images below:
While the time wasn’t quite right yet in 2022 for the Sounds of Aloha Chorus to hold our traditional Christmas show in person again, we were delighted to record another video holiday performance on stage at the Hawaii Theatre. The video of “Songs of the Season” was and is available for viewing on the Hawaii Theatre website, for a contribution to the Theatre, which like all live performance venues has had a rough go of things for the past couple of years.
Back in 2016 and again in 2018, quartets from the Sounds of Aloha were featured in two episodes of Hawaii Public Radio’s show “Applause in a Small Room.” Named for HPR’s Atherton Studio, the weekly broadcast showcased live performances of musicians from Hawaii and elsewhere, recorded in front of small studio audiences. Our quartets had a chance to teach the audience and listeners about our singing style and perform as individual quartets and as a larger ensemble (in barbershop vernacular, a "very large quartet," or "VLQ").
For the second time, the Sounds of Aloha Chorus was forced to forgo our traditional ice cream social out of lingering COVID problems, but like last year, we still wanted a chance to combine some singing with some ice cream—and to help out our friends from Dave’s Hawaiian Ice Cream, who have generously donated ice cream for our past socials. So on May 30, 2021, we were back at the Ilikai Hotel porte-cochère, delivering pre-ordered Dave’s ice cream and waffle bowls to customers, accompanied to the live sound of quartet singing!
There may have been fewer of them delivered overall, many were sung through masks and/or outdoors, and a few were delivered virtually, but the Sounds of Aloha found ways during this COVID pandemic to go ahead and provide our popular annual Singing Valentines to lovebirds!
We were grateful this year to our friends at KHON television for helping spread the word with this Take2 story on Wake Up 2day.
The Sounds of Aloha Chorus held its first ever Virtual Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 13, 2020, a benefit performance to support the historic Hawai'i Theatre consisting of fun highlights of past SOA performances there, new performances by local quartets, and some very special guest appearances. It's still available for online viewing!
For years, the Sounds of Aloha have held a popular ice cream social, with roaming quartets, all-you-can-eat ice cream and toppings, and a short chorus performance at the end. This year, with most everything shut down during the COVID pandemie, we haven't been able to gather and perform live. But that challenge pales in comparison to the impact COVID has had on so many small businesses.