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Kahilu Theatre Recipient of State Grant

April 29, 2014, 4:59 PM HST
* Updated April 29, 5:01 PM
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Kahilu Theatre, a mainstay for culture and the arts in Waimea for decades, is getting a $1.5 million boost in the form of a state grant.

Sen. Malama Solomon said the funding released by Gov. Neil Abercrombie will help renovate and modernize the theater used as a venue for arts, education and various other types of productions.

“The Kahilu Theatre has and will continue to play a substantial role in bringing culture and the arts to Waimea,” Solomon said in a press release. “It holds a special place in the hearts of many of our Hawaii Island residents, including my ‘ohana who has shared hula in this theatre numerous times over the years.”

Solomon said the theater built by former Parker Ranch owner Richard Smart has not had major renovations since it was built in 1981.

“These funds are needed to update and modernize a beloved Hawaii hub for the performing arts,” she said.


The grant was approved by the state Legislature in 2013.

Sen. Malama Solomon. Courtesy photo.

Sen. Malama Solomon. Courtesy photo.


After a closure, the theater’s board has created a new strategic plan to refocus the facility to once again be a centerpiece for culture and the arts, Solomon said.

“I was also delighted to see the theater back from its yearlong intermission last year, and with its new and invigorating strategic plan for the future, including becoming more of a community hub, I hope to see it flourish for another 30 years,” she said.

Earlier this year, the theater was the recipient of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

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