Talking Story 4/28/13

Roy Sakuma is coming!

 The man who has taught more people to play ukulele than anyone else will be leading a workshop on Saturday June 1 at the NY Uke Fest! Four decades ago, Roy started the original ukulele festival in Waikiki. Every year since, hundreds of young people have been introduced to the ukulele at this Festival, which continues to this day and is stronger than ever. Our very own Randy Shimanuki, who played last year at the Fest, was one of the people that started playing through Roy. We are altering our entire workshop schedule to take advantage of this distinct opportunity to present Roy in NY.

This is exciting enough, but Roy is also going to do a short set at the Friday evening  concert. We are grateful to Andy Wang and Halawai for facilitating Roy’s appearance. Roy, through his love of the instrument and his Aloha spirit, may serve as a catalyst for an evolved Festival here in NY with new dimensions. If so, it is a testament to the influence that one man can have.

Other developments have take place this week and others are in the works. All of us are doing our best to arrange another great Fest for 2013. We are aiming to have the website updated and fairly complete by May 1. Please be patient and look at our site to get details.

Tickets are available on the website and there is also a button to donate to our Fund for Youth. Quite a few Fest attendees made contributions in this way in years past. We attended the fundraising benefit in Brooklyn this week for Katie Down’s Songwriting Program for South Africa, which will be one or the programs we sponsor this year. At the fundraiser, I saw a great performance by the Ukuladies, who will also be playing at this year’s Fest! It is going to be a memorable event.  We hope you can make it this year!