Honolulu, September 14, 2023
The sounds of strings, piano, harp, opera, and ukuleles resonated through the warm Hawaiian night as the second edition of Music on the Reef graced Honolulu. This annual event, conceived as a heartfelt thank-you to our generous donors, took on a new dimension in light of recent events and became a profound benefit for a vital cause.
A Night of Music and Giving Back
As the sun set, guests gathered at the stunning Pacific Club to embark on an evening of enchanting music and camaraderie. The event kicked off with a delightful spread of pūpūs, featuring a medley of mouthwatering appetizers inspired by Hawaiian cuisine. Amidst the laughter and mingling, we took a moment to share a little about our work and the purpose behind Music on the Reef. The event was initially intended as an expression of our gratitude to our donors, but due to the devastating wildfires in Maui, it gained a new purpose.
The wildfires in Maui served as a stark reminder of the challenges our beloved islands face due to climate change. In response, we launched the Community Resilience Fund, a testament to our unwavering commitment to safeguarding our natural treasures and the communities who rely on them. These underwater marvels, coral reefs, are the lifeblood of our oceans and a cornerstone of Hawaii’s vibrant ecosystem.
Community Resilience Fund
The loss in Lahaina served as a wake-up call to many, including our organization. One of our program staff was directly impacted in a life-changing way, and at that moment, we knew we needed to be prepared for more major disasters as climate change ramps up.
Enter the Community Resilience Fund, which we officially kicked off on September 14th at Music on the Reef.
Major weather events, due to climate change, are realities we cannot ignore. It’s a menace that threatens not just our musical harmony but the very existence of the coral reefs that inspired this event. Coral reefs are the backbone of our marine ecosystems, nurturing a wealth of biodiversity and supporting our fisheries. Protecting them is not just an environmental imperative; it’s a duty we owe to future generations.
In response to climate change, we are securing funds for coastal communities just like Lahaina. Through research, conservation initiatives, and community engagement, we are committed to ensuring the people who protect our underwater wonders endure for generations to come.
The Magical Performance
With the crowd’s spirits lifted and hearts warmed, it was time for the main event—a concert that transported everyone to a world of musical enchantment. The stage was graced by a lineup of extraordinary musicians, featuring the incomparable Josh Nakazawa on cello and the legendary Jake Shimabukuro (ukulele), our CORAL ambassadors, alongside world class virtuosos–concertmaster for the Hawaiian Symphony Orchestra, Ignance Jang (violin), Shawn Conley (bass), Megan Conley (harp), Jasmine Nagano (piano), Natalie Mitchell (voice), Kevin Chang (voice), and Jackson Waldhoff (electric bass). All played with heartfelt intensity and artistry, which captivated everyone.
The ensemble featured an array of instruments, from strings to keys, chilling vocals, and the soulful strumming of ukuleles. The synergy between these diverse sounds created a mesmerizing fusion of melodies that resonated with the very essence of Hawaii’s rich cultural tapestry.
A Call to Action
As the last note hung in the air and the crowd erupted in applause, it was evident that the evening had left a lasting impact. Beyond the musical celebration, Music on the Reef was a clarion call to action.
What makes events like this even more remarkable is the unwavering support of the Hawaiian community. Time and again, we have witnessed resilience and determination when it comes to safeguarding our natural treasures. We are immensely grateful for their continued support, and it serves as a testament to our shared dedication to fighting for our coral reefs’ future.
The second edition of Music on the Reef was a resounding success, both in terms of musical splendor and its impact on our collective consciousness. As we look ahead to future editions of this event, we do so with a renewed commitment to the cause and a profound sense of gratitude for everyone who joined us on this journey.
To all our donors, supporters, and the entire Hawaii community, we say mahalo nui loa. Together, we will continue to harmonize for a sustainable future where our coral reefs thrive, and the melodies of Music on the Reef continue to enchant generations to come.