Popularity of Hula in Japan


On a recent trip to Japan, I was struck by how popular hula is with Japanese
women. Some of the people there told me that hula is growing in popularity among
young women. Some graduate students who recently returned home to Japan after 1
year in Hawaii have taken up hula as their hobby because it reminds them of
their time in the islands. One day at a shopping mall in western Japan, some
Hawaii hula dancers gave free lessons to a crowd who had gathered to watch. The
entire floor area by the stage was packed. People even crowded on the second and
third floor balconies to watch and learn basic hula steps. I guess since we are
so used to seeing hula here in Hawaii, it usually doesn’t draw the kind of
reaction that it does in Japan. Still, the enthusiasm for hula in Japan was
quite an eye opener.



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