Naval Station Pearl Harbor
Singers from Hawaii Opera Theatre following their performance at Naval Station Pearl Harbor. Photo by Cheryl Minato, courtesy of Hawaii Opera Theatre
Staff at Pearl Harbor lured their audience in early with an elegant sunset reception featuring the Pacific Fleet Woodwind Quintet before Hawaii Opera Theatre's performance began at 6:30. An excellent strategy, as the venue was filled by performance time with approximately 300 guests including officers, families, and retirees.
This was Hawaii Opera Theatre's second military base performance, having been at Schofield Barracks a week earlier. This was also the third time that Pearl Harbor has partnered with NEA on an event, having hosted performances from Shakespeare in American Communities and Operation Homecoming in the past two years - the base is developing a ready audience for the arts.
As with Hawaii Opera Theatre's Schofield Barracks performance, the repertoire was well selected to include works that would be familiar to the audience. A particularly wonderful element of Hawaii Opera Theatre's performance was that two of five singers were military personnel. This was perhaps a surprise to some military attendees to see their own so well represented, but it also helped to create a unique connection between music and military. The base's special events coordinator had this to say: "I was amazed by their talent and abilities. I believe that this performance served the intended purpose - introducing our community to an art form that they hadn't been exposed to, but can truly embrace and enjoy."
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