I am Kumu Hula Leilani Manulanikauikawekiuipihamekalokomaika'iikeaonei Birkmire from Pearl City, O'ahu. Mahalo for your interest in our hālau.
Through the guidance of Kumu Hula Keli'i Chang and my many years with Hālau Ho’ola Ka Mana O Hawai’i, the mana (power) and kuleana (duty) to perpetuate the Hawaiian culture was passed on to me in a glorious ‘uniki (graduation) ceremony in 2008. As a keiki, my twin sister and I performed at Ala Moana Shopping Center in Honolulu on a regular basis. My background includes instruction and training in hula kahiko (ancient hula), hula ‘auana (modern hula), ‘olelo Hawai’i (Hawaiian language), oli (chanting not for dance), mele (songs/chants), costume making, as well as instrument making and playing. I also have experience in other Polynesian dances such as Tahitian, Tongan and Samoan. Because the journey of hula is never-ending, I additionally dedicate myself every day to personally furthering my knowledge through Kamehameha Schools Distance Learning courses, ‘Aha Punana Leo Hawaiian language studies, ancient texts and books, old hula and chant recordings, and studying under noted kumu hula. I have over 30 years of Hula and Polynesian dance experience and training.
Kumu Hula Frank Keli’i Chang through Elizabeth Moana’ala Su’a Chang, Rebecca Ho’opi’i Bodnar, Sara Moanikealaonapuamakahikina Wood Naluai and George Holokai.
Additional Workshops and Classes:
Nā kumu Anne Blankenship, Moana & Keola Beamer, Amy Stillman, Kaui Brandt, Kawehi Punahele, Tiana Liufau, Kihei & Mapuana de Silva, Paul Apo and Teriki Keil.
Recent Teaching and Competitions
2016, 2017 - Hula Workshops at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center
2013, 2015 - San Antonio, Texas - Hula and Oli workshop with Kihei and Kumu Mapuana de Silva
2014 - Ka 'Aha Hula 'O Hālauaola World Hula Conference - Kauaʻi Island
2011- Lawton, Oklahoma - He Manu Nehenehe Roa No Te Moana Tahitian workshop with Tiana Liufau/Nonosina
2010 Houston, Texas - Mana I Ka Hula Workshop and Competition
1999-2008 Texas – ʻOlapa, Hoʻopaʻa, Kumu Kokua for Kumu Keli’i Chang/Halau Ho’ola Ka Mana O Hawai’i
2007 Orlando, Florida – Taught at ‘Ohana of the Islands Workshop
2003, 2004, 2007 Long Beach, California - E Hula Mau Hula & Oli Competition
2006 Hilo, Hawai’i - Merrie Monarch Hula Competition
2007 - current - Formed Ka Pā Hula O Manulani
Kumu Manu's Memberships and Associations:
The Dance Council, DFW International Community Alliance, Ocean Conservancy, Hoewa'a Outrigger Canoe Club