The 2017 Festival will be on April 28-30, 2017 at the Ka’anapali Beach Hotel. Open Stage performances are planned for Friday and Saturday beginning mid-morning and going through early afternoon. Evening Ho’olaule’a programs and public Jam Sessions will be presented on both Friday and Saturday nights. The lineup of featured performers will be posted here and on the festival’s Facebook page as soon as it is finalized.
Saturday Workshops will be given on the Hawaiian steel guitar and topics related to the instrument, including Steel Guitar Instruction, Recording Methods and Playing Techniques, Hula, and Hawaiian Style Singing. Information about the workshops will be posted when it becomes available.
Public “kanikapila” jam sessions are also planned for Friday and Saturday nights and hosted by the master steel guitar players. Everyone is invited to participate and play along with the featured players and festival guest musicians. Musicians are advised to bring their own instruments, amplifiers and music stands if required.
Open Stage sessions will be presented on both Friday and Saturday from 10:00 to 3:00. These sessions will feature steel guitar players from the United States and abroad in half-hour playing sessions. If you are a Hawaiian Steel Guitar player or a band with a Hawaiian Steel Guitar and would like to reserve an open stage session, please submit your request by filling out the form on the Contact Page. Due to the nature of the festival, your performance should be on the Hawaiian steel guitar but incidental use of other instruments is permissible.
Vintage steel guitars will be in display, courtesy of Geri Valdriz. Festival T-shirts will also be available for purchase at the festival information booth, as well as artists’ CDs and the festival poster. Festival posters autographed by all of the featured steel guitarists will be given free to any donation of $25 or more to AECG, the event’s presenter.
This year’s festival will be held in two locations. Upon conclusion of the festival activities at the Ka’anapali Beach Hotel on Sunday, the festival will relocate to the Queen Ka’ahamanu Center in Kahului, Maui. Performances will begin at 12 Noon and continue through 5 P.M. and will include selected main performers from the hotel festival. The vintage steel guitar exhibit will also be presented at the center.
School visitations are a very important part of the Festival not commonly seen by the general public. Presentations are made by festival teams comprising some master players, students, and other musicians. These teams, upon invitation, travel to various Maui schools at all levels from elementary to high school and present an educational and musical program that introduces attendees to the Hawaiian Steel Guitar. At the end of the presentation, attendees are invited to ask questions and try out the steel guitar if they desire.