PERFORMANCE: Spring 2018 Great Leaps Dance Concert to showcase 100 student dancers from UH Hilo and Hawaiʻi Community College, April 27 & 28

The performances are a culmination of the semester for all UH Hilo and Hawaiʻi Community College dance classes; the show features over 100 dancers.

Silhouette of dancer in rainbow colors; Silhouette of crowd in background.

EVENT: Great Leaps Dance Concert—The performances are a culmination of the semester for all University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo and Hawaiʻi Community College dance classes; the show features over 100 dancers.
DATES: Friday, April 27 (Preview), and Saturday, April 28 (Main Show).
TIME: 7:30 p.m.
PLACE: Performing Arts Center, University of Hawai‘i at Hilo.

Sponsored by the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo performing arts department.

“These high-energy and emotional works were successfully taken on tour to area schools to promote the UH Hilo Performing Arts program and to encourage college enrollment to future students.” —Celeste Staton, UH Hilo dance instructor.

The show

The concert will highlight the senior project of Sharyse Molina performing to music of Lady Gaga. Nicole Monette presents her dance class of teens from Center Stage Dance Alliance in her choreography project to music of Pink Floyd.

The UH Hilo Modern Dance II class will perform BLURBLE WERBLE, a work conceived by Annie Bunker in collaboration with visiting scholar Jeongha Kim and UH Hilo Performing Arts student Bridge Hartman.

The ballet classes taught by Staton offer upbeat numbers to “Singin’ in the Rain” and “Dancing in the Streets.”

Jazz Dance class choreographed by Kea Kapahua, in collaboration with Lawrence Mano, will stir the heart with selections from The Greatest Showman.

There will also be two pieces of traditional courtly fan dancing and drum dance choreographed by Kim.

Muriel Assi will share her heritage in a piece entitled, “Africa: United,” that showcases high energy and stirring rhythms.

The UH Hilo Dance Ensemble highlights dances created by Sarah Dunaway and Mano.

The Great Leaps tradition

Earnest T. Morgan
Modern dance in the state of Hawai‘i had its roots through the work of Earnest T. Morgan (1947-1991), founder of the biannual Great Leaps Dance Concert

Founded by a Hawai‘i dance legend, the late Earnest T. Morgan, to showcase student learning and accomplishments in dance achieved in the semester, Great Leaps has become a greatly anticipated biannual event at UH Hilo. The event had its start some 30 years ago at the campus’s old gym.

Great Leaps has been a long standing important tradition for the dancers and the performing arts department. Years ago, the annual performance was squeezed into the old gym space. It was a huge and boisterous celebration of dance that included all dance classes, beginning through advanced, in all styles. That aspect has remained but with the advent of the performing arts major in 1993, the venue was upgraded to the UH Hilo Theatre, now called the UH Hilo Performing Arts Center.


The Spring 2018 shows are open seating events. Tickets for the Preview Show on April 27 are $3.00 for all seats. Tickets for the Main Show on April 28 are $7 General and $5 Discount for students w/valid ID and children 17 and under.

To order tickets contact the Box Office at 932-7490 or order online:

For disability accommodation, contact Dori Yamada at least 10 business days prior to the event.