My study of hula began with Bella Richards of Kailua, Oʻahu. I loved her style of dancing from the first time I saw her dancers perform. It took some persausion to convice her to take me as her student. I had several counts against me: I was an adult (she didnʻt teach adults), I was a mainland haole, and I was a relative new comer to the islands. But I was determined! She agreed to give me a trial. In time she began training me to be a teacher - her idea, not mine.
Bella did not teach kahiko (her husband was a Jehovah Witness and he objected) so she sent me to Lani Kalama to complete my training. Lani wasnʻt teaching at that time but I managed to persuade her to be my teacher. This was about 1976. I enjoyed a long and rich training with Aunty Lani culminating in my ʻuniki as Kumu Hula in 1990.
As you all know, that was only the beginning of my learning. I am a lifetime student-still studying and still learning. I have given the ʻuniki rites to one Kumu Hula and am training others at the various levels. Hula is my joy and my passion.
Pattye Kealohalani Kapualokeokalaniākea Wright