Various images come to mind when one thinks of Hawaii, our 50th state and our only state to be located outside of North America. Its nearly 1.4 million residents embody the Aloha Spirit which has led to the rich diversity of cultural expressions. The Kona Choral Society, located on the Big Island, is a volunteer chorus founded in 1990 that is dedicated to performing major works along with music that reflects different genres including African, Asian, Latin American, Polynesian, American Folk, Black Gospel, Spirituals, as well as traditional Hawaiian choral music.
In addition to presenting their annual concerts, the group hosts a two and three-day SPARK! Music Camp during the October and March school breaks that serves nearly 100 K-8th grade students. The free music intensive includes instruction and performance opportunities in ukulele, keyboard, band, percussion, dance and choral singing. Those singers who would like to sing throughout the year can join KCS’s Primary Chorus, Children’s Chorus and Youth Chorus who rehearse throughout the year.
In an effort to encourage others to spread the Aloha Spirit, the group has performed locally at the annual Martin Luther Jr. celebration and has hosted a “Sing for the Cure” concert, and performed internationally on concert tours to China, Scandinavia and Australia among other destinations. The personal mission of the group’s conductor, Susan McCreary Duprey, is “to get people singing. It’s thrilling to see a nervous alto with no experience stick with it and gain the confidence to sing solo at other venues. All it takes is the desire to sing.”