On April 25, close to 600 people attended HBA’s Arts and Film Festival (HBAAFF), showcasing student artwork and films at the high school campus for the first time.
Making use of the new Arts & Science building, and Learning Center, the festival gave visitors a chance to enjoy and browse through projects done in Art, Science, and Digital Media classes.
The evening began with an opening performance by the high school jazz band, while seniors Vivian Kuo and Bryn Yasui entertained the crowd as the MC’s for the night.
This year, science exhibits were added, featuring robots created by the high school robotics team, and a small animal exhibit—with mice, and the Biology class’s lop-eared rabbit, Medulla Oblongata, named after a part of the brain. Also new to the festival were food trucks from Le Crêpe Café and the Santacruz Taco Company.
Making [The Flower Girl] was a great experience and it made me appreciate the process of filmmaking way more.
The screening of films and documentaries by the Documentary Filmmaking, and Art and History of Film classes took place in the Dan Liu gymnasium. The best drama, documentary and actors were then determined by an audience vote. Senior Jensen Vinca, director of the winning drama Analepsis said, “It was a surprise to me. I thought The Flower Girl had a great chance of winning. I was actually more happy that we got the film finished in time. Winning was just a plus that night.”
The Flower Girl came close to Analepsis in the total number of awards received. “Making [The Flower Girl] was a great experience,” said sophomore best female actor Jaci Ishikawa, “and it made me appreciate the process of filmmaking way more. Through this project, I could get a glimpse of how people make movies in the real world and the amount of work it takes to make these films believable. It was also fun acting.” Ishikawa played a young Japanese immigrant named Sayuri Miyake in the drama.
While the audience votes were being tallied, a talent show was held, with vice principal Ryan Frontiera, English teacher Alexandra Taylor, and Chemistry teacher Jordan Yasutomi as the judges. The HBA Dance Club, the band From and To, and senior Kathy Kimura performed. In the end, From and To won the judges over with their upbeat performance of the song Radioactive by Imagine Dragons. Junior guitarist and singer Jasha Onogi said, “The experience was great. Just being able to make everyone laugh and have a good time enjoying our performance made it all worthwhile.”
At the conclusion of the night, special recognition was given to students who proved to be outstanding in their artwork. Junior Mikayla Mau was awarded first place overall in the art division for her painting “Boating School”. “We live in Hawai’i where we experience the warm sun and blue skies every day,” Mau said, “and because we see these things every day, we get used to it and nature loses its value. I wanted to try and portray [in my painting] that nature still has its beauty and should still be of value to us.”
According to Fine Arts department chair Sean Malinger, the festival’s main goal is to provide a comfortable atmosphere where students can boldly showcase their artistic talents to an audience. Planning for the event began a year ago and took into consideration visitor and student input from last year’s festival. Looking ahead, Malinger said, “We’ve considered having a different date so more people, especially [from] the elementary [school], can attend. We’ve been doing it the day before [the HBA] Fun Fair and I think that does affect the number of parents who are able to come because they are prepping for the following day.”
As for his assessment on this year’s festival, Malinger said, “I think it went well, probably better than expected with the move to the new facilities and the addition of some elements. It could have made it more unpredictable but instead it went well.” Malinger credits the Visual and Performing Arts faculty team, and HBA Communications & Public Relations Officer Christina Yasutomi for helping to put the event together.
DOCUMENTARY & FILM AWARDS
Best Drama: Analepsis
Best Supporting Actress: Chie Watanabe (The Flower Girl)
Best Supporting Actor: Jason Shon (Analepsis)
Best Actor: Chase Perry (Analepsis)
Best Actress: Jaci Ishikawa (The Flower Girl)
Best Documentary: The Green Side Of Things
TALENT SHOW AWARDS
1st Place: From and To
2nd Place: HBA Dance Club
3rd Place: Senior Cathy Kimura