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The art of hula is thriving in cities all over the country and the world, but it is not always understood. In The Natives Are Restless, journalist Constance Hale presents the largely untold story of the dance tradition, using the twin keyholes of Kumu Patrick Makuakane (a Hawaii-born, San Francisco–based hula master), and his 350-person arts organization (Na Lei Hulu i Ka Wekiu). In the background, she weaves the poignant story of an ancient people and the resilience of their culture. In the foreground, she tells the story of an electrifying new form of hula that has emerged from a restless generation of artists like Makuakane. The crisp narrative is complemented by full-color photographs and illustrations. Her love for hula, and her history with the dance, inform Hale’s prose on every level. She makes Makuakane’s exuberant, fierce, sensuous dance style come alive on the page.
Constance Hale is a Hawaii-born, San Francisco-based journalist who has been writing about Hawaiian culture for more than twenty-five years. She has also worked as a staff reporter and editor at the Oakland Tribune, the San Francisco Examiner, Wired, and Health magazines. Hale started dancing the hula at seven and performed each year in May Day festivals at Haleiwa Elementary School, switching to ballet and jazz dance while at Punahou School and Princeton University. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton and a master’s degree from UC Berkeley. She has studied hula with Patrick Makuakāne for twenty years and edits the halau’s annual newsletter, Kaholo‘ana.
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