This next bit is from one of the singers (and my roomie) from both competitions. Though we were both singers, that did not mean we didn’t have to also be kokua (helpers) for the dancers. Here are her thoughts…
“From our first Kumukahi and E Hula Mau meeting to the end of each competition was a very long journey. All of the countless days and nights of practice, costume making, lei making, or any other preparations for Kumukahi and E Hula Mau the hālau did it together. There was never a selfish moment from anyone. The connection with everyone grew stronger as time went by and Kumukahi and E Hula Mau drew closer. The dedication and passion towards hula and each other was definitely seen by the judges and all who watched us perform.
It’s hard to explain the experience I had at Kumukahi and E Hula Mau, but it was all worth it. I would definitely encourage all to go through it at least once if they can and they will see how fun it is.”