Note: this column has been updated; Jay Larrin’s show times were incorrect in earlier postings.

Jay Larrin, tapped as a Lifetime Achievement Award inductee by the Hawaii Academy of Recording Arts earlier this year, will make a rare concert appearance at Na Kupuna Nights May 28 at the Hawaii Convention Center in Waikiki.

Larrin, a singer, pianist, composer and poet, will be the featured entertainer, in an event produced by the Hawaiian Music Perpetuation Society, celebrating Na Kupuna of Mele Hawaii. He also is a seasoned Na Hoku Hanohano Award winner, known for a body of work that includes “The Snows of Maunakea,” “The Ko’olaus Are Sleeping,” “Molokai Lullaby”  and “Little Lei Lady.”

Jay Larrin

The event also will feature Halehaku Seabury and Bryan Tolentino, singers and ukulele artists, who also are previous Na Hoku Hanohano Award winners.

There are daytime and nighttime components for the event, celebrating island music, food and arts and crafts.

The schedule:

  • 3 to 8 p.m. – E Ku’ai Kakou, “We Shop,” with Hawaiian inspired vendors.
  • 4:30 to 5:15 p.m. – Kani Ka Pila, with Kuuipo Kumukahi, at the rooftop breeze way.
  • 5:30 p.m. – Doors open for dinner, with a 6 p.m. opening protocol.
Halehaku Seabury, Bryan Tolentino
  • 6:15 p.m. – Dinner service, featuring Hawaiian food.
  • 6:15 p.m. – Performance by Halehaku Seabury and Bryan Tolentino.
  • 7 to 7:30 p.m. – Raffle drawing and a silent auction.
  • 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. —  Jay Larrin performance on piano.

Tickets: $79, includes concert, dinner and parking; visit  …

‘Sunshine’ postponed again

For the third time in as many years, “The Sunshine Boys,” featuring Joe Moore and Pat Sajak, has been postponed again until June 2023, due to the enduring pandemic crisis that will elevate some protocols, like face masking and crowd controls, in the weeks ahead.

The show has been on the summer slate at the Hawaii Theatre throughout the prevailing health concerns; it was to run from June 16 through June 26 this year. Clearly, the development of another rescheduling is a whirl of misfortune, yet again.

“With COVID cases rising for eight consecutive weeks and the Health Department predicting the numbers will continue to rise for an undermined amount of time before they go down, we felt the only responsible and sensible thing to do in the interest of public safety was to postpone,” said Moore, veteran KHON-2 news anchor, who has regularly staged theatrical productions co-starring his one-time Army buddy, Sajak, the longtime host of “Wheel of Fortune.”

Joe Moore, Pat Sajak

“Big disappoint for all of us,” said Moore about pushing back the Neil Simon comedy for another year. “Three strikes and we’re out,” he shared in an email, and Moore was to announce the postponement in the 6 p.m. newcast on Channel 2 today (May 19).

“We’ll try to get out from under the cloud of COVID or whatever new virus might emerge,” he said. The uncertainty of restrictions of attendance numbers of large groups also was factor in the postponement.

Moore also revealed that the Hawaii Theatre had $50,000 worth of tickets sold a month before the “Sunshine” launching, when the decision was made earlier this morning to wait another year. “It wasn’t ticket sales I was worried about, it was the safety of theater-goers with so much COVID in the community,” said Moore.

Thus, it was the right call to postpone now, to enable ticket holders to plan ahead and also avoid possible COVID infections when huge numbers are in the same space amid the uncertainty of the virus.

Those with tickets for the scheduled June playdates may hold onto their tickets for next year’s performance, or accept a Hawaii Theatre gift card to enjoy another show.

“It’s been a tough time for the non-profit theater and folks’ support now is more important than ever,” said Moore.

The rescheduling for 2023 means another year of long-distance phone rehearsals and Zoom sessions for Moore and Sajak, which has become a routine for the two buddies in the past, and another delay is, indeed, frustrating.

The theater’s website,, should provide other specifics, though had not been updated to reflect the postponement yet when we checked midday. …

And that’s Show Biz. …


Unexpected oddities are part of the  2022-23 season on island stages, beginning this fall.

For starters, Diamond Head Theatre, which prides itself in being the Broadway of the Pacific,  will be one show short – with five, not six productions – in its 2022-23 outing. But there’s a valid reason.

And Manoa Valley Theatre, often called Hawaii’s off-Broadway resource, will have one show too many in its 2022-23 slate. Six shows had been scheduled, but the theater has to schedule a seventh, apart of the season. Yep, there is a valid reason, too.

Diamond Head Theatre will actually be working from two venues in the coming season, with the first show on the slate, “Anything Goes,” opening in the current theater. They’ll skip on a holiday production this year (sorry, Santa), so that there will be ample time to move house, into the new theater facility, still under construction. They’ll welcome first viewers Jan. 2023, when DHT’s second show, “Cinderella,” is launched in the spanky new state-of-the-art facility. So this simply will be an extended intermission.

At MVT, its secure six-show slate will have to accommodate the seventh title, since “Spamilton,” Gerard Alessendrini’s  popular spoof of the hit musical that was slated this year, had to be bumped off the current calendar because of scheduling issues, one being the real “Hamilton” will be staged at Blaisdell Concert Hall, as part of a four-show “Broadway in Hawaii” season, this winter.

Complications and challenges aside, the new season will offer spectacles galore, some new, some familiar, reflecting the anything-can-happen, things-can-go-astray pulse of live theater. Ain’t it all exciting?

The early outlook from the organizations ready to roll with an agenda. We’ll report other seasons on other fronts, when they’re announced.

So here’s the schedule, so far:

Diamond Head Theatre:

  • “Anything Goes,”  Sept. 9 to 25. Cole Porter’s musical comedy, about Reno Sweeney setting sail for England, amid a complicated love triangle that unfolds at sea. Besides the title tune, the score includes “I Get a Kick Out of You.”
  • “Cinderella,” Jan. 20 to Feb. 5, 2023. This is the Rodgers and Hammerstein version, not the Disney variation, about the cinder girl who becomes the belle of the ball, complete with glass slipper.
  • “La Cage Aux Folles,” March 24 to April 9, 2023. Music and lyrics, with book by Harvey Fierstein, is based on the Jean Poiret French play, about a nightclub with drag entertainment, owned by Georges, and starring his partner in life, Albin, featuring the “I Am What I Am” anthem that defines the show.
  • “Bodyguard,” May 26 to June 11, 2023. Based on a Warner Bros. film, with book by Alexander Dinelaris, and screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan. Essentially, a tribute to Whitney Houston, who played Rachel in the film, and includes the poignant and powerful “I Will Always Love You” signature.  Held over by DHT since the early stages of the pandemic, but finally debuting.
  • “Beauty and the Beast,” July 21 to Aug. 6, 2023. This Disney classic, with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, and book by Linda Woolverton, is an Oscar and Tony winner about Belle and a prince trapped under a spell as a Beast.

Manoa Valley Theatre:

  • “Cabaret,” the stage and film hit, Sept. 8 to 25. A Tony and Oscar-winning classic, with music by John Kander and Frank Ebb, based on a play by John Van Druten.  Hits include “Wilkkomen,” “Don’t Tell Mama,” and “Perfectly Marvelous.”
  • “The Game’s Afoot, Or Holmes for the Holidays,” Nov. 17 to Dec. 4. A comedy by Ken Ludwig, mixing murder, mystery, and madcap mayhem in the spirit of Sherlock Holmes.
  • “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” Jan. 12-29. Based on Charles Dickens’ unfinished novel where everyone is suspected of murder and spectators help decide the outcome.
  • “Tick, Tick … Boom!,” March 9 to 26. Jonathan Larson’s autobiographical musical, about an aspiring composer frustrated about his looming 30th birthday, and struggling to create a song to seal the deal. A Hawaii premiere.
  • “The Play That Goes Wrong,” May 11 to 28. A comedy in the show-must-go-on tradition, where things go askew before the final curtain. A Hawaii premiere.
  • “The Chinese Lady,” July 13 to 30. A tale of an immigrant from China, based on a true story, laced with history and humor. A Hawaii premiere.
  • “Spamilton,” a parody by Gerard Allensandrini of the Lin-Manuel Miranda Broadway hit, will have to be scheduled, date unknown yet.

Kennedy Theatre:

Mainstage productions:

  • “Form Within a Form: Echoes and Reverberations,” Nov. 11, 12, 18, and 20. One of two Mainstage works, this one assembling collaborative dance, music, mixed media, scenic art and costume design; described as Kennedy’s largest dance production assembling innovative and renowned choreographers from abroad and locally, with music and media reflecting themes of nurturing, nourishing, sustaining and transmission intended to transit through the senses and body.
  •  “20,000 Leagues Deep, #hawaii_ascending,” Feb. 24, 25, March 3, 5.  An immersive Theatre for Young Audiences production, also on the Mainstage, expressly for the young of heart, confronting the climate crisis in Hawaii, the Pacific and the world and intended to flag the obstacles and dangers in the battle for the planet. Directed by Alvin Chan.

Primetime Series

  • “Chinee, Japanee, All Mix Up,” Sept —. An exploration of identity in Hawaii and in America. Directed by Reiko Ho.
  • “Memorial Day,” October.  Set in 1992, at the height of the AIDS crisis, when a generation of infected men are dying amid prevailing anti-gay hysteria. A Hawaii premiere.
  • “Dance, Dance, Dance,” January. A play adapted on Haruki Murakami’s novel, set in Hokkaido, Tokyo and Honolulu, with a non-linear space-time warp, where dance is a metaphor to restore, rebuild, and rediscover life.
  • “Footholds,” April. A dance show featuring MFA and BFA student choreographers on the eve of earning their diplomas.

Late Night Series

  • Late Night Theatre Company, operated by students, though hosted by UHM’s Department of Theatre and Dance, will offer a yet-to-be-identified production set for fall, 2022. With the hallmarks of the genre:  limited budget, minimalist tech elements highlighting student acting and directing skills, in the student-friendly late-night format.

Broadway in Hawaii:

Performances at Blaisdell Concert Hall

  • “Jersey Boys,” Sept. 13 to 25 .A biographical music, about the life and times of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, features all the yesteryear hits like “Sherri,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” and “Walk Like a Man.”
  •  “Hamilton,” Dec. 7 to Jan. 29, 2023. Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony-winning mega hit about Alexander Hamilton, told in hip-hop rap. A Hawaii premiere, in an unprecedented seven-week residency.
  • “Cats,” June 13 to 18, 2023. The Broadway classic, by Andrew Lloyd Webber, wstill the cat’s meow, is avpurr-fect “Memory”-maker, for a new generation of theater fans.

Broadway grosses, week ending May 1, 2022

Broadway grosses took a dip, with “The Music Man” and “Hamilton” retaining their No. 1 and No 2 status; at No. 3, “Plaza Suite” moved up the laddar.

The rundown, courtesy the Broadway League:

Show NameGrossGrossTotalAttn Capacity%Capacity
A STRANGE LOOP$415,275.505,6117,37676.07%
AMERICAN BUFFALO$528,846.304,6306,00877.06%
BIRTHDAY CANDLES$286,387.003,9245,81667.47%
COME FROM AWAY$446,094.405,1028,36860.97%
DEAR EVAN HANSEN$474,607.705,0677,87264.37%
FUNNY GIRL$1,116,472.959,4569,75296.96%
GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY$131,956.501,6832,99456.21%
HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD$1,095,952.009,18312,97670.77%
HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE$311,030.004,3054,45996.55%
MJ THE MUSICAL$1,226,825.109,36911,09684.44%
MOULIN ROUGE! THE MUSICAL$1,419,844.609,90410,40095.23%
MR. SATURDAY NIGHT$711,269.206,0067,14684.05%
MRS. DOUBTFIRE$421,454.005,2888,27263.93%
PARADISE SQUARE$206,561.804,2607,84854.28%
PLAZA SUITE$1,656,073.607,6937,80098.63%
TAKE ME OUT$414,249.254,0834,68087.24%
THE BOOK OF MORMON$857,180.977,3118,52885.73%
THE LION KING$1,635,397.0012,69713,56893.58%
THE LITTLE PRINCE$232,808.003,05011,77625.90%
THE MINUTES$374,812.004,0565,33676.01%
THE MUSIC MAN$3,314,670.5611,95512,20097.99%
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA$625,180.426,66812,84051.93%
THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH$141,111.004,0048,46447.31%
TINA – THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL$872,345.507,02411,82459.40%

And that’s Show Biz. …


Manoa Valley Theatre has announced it is postponing its planned “Spamilton” musical. So if you have season seats for the Gerard Allesandrini parody of “Hamilton,” it was to open in July but will be staged at MVT sometime next year, specific dates to be determined.

You may contact the box office to either receive a refund, or secure tickets to Lisa Matsumoto’s “Once Upon One Time,” the local pidgin musical parodying classic fairy tale figures with island orientation, that is not part of the current season, but a summer add-on attraction at the Kaimuki Performing Arts Center.

MVT secured the rights to the popular off-Broadway musical that wholly targets the “Hamilton” production and its central characters like Alexander Hamilton and King George III.  Originally, MVY secured the  rights to the show, under an agreement that stipulated that “Spamilton” could not be produced in a city where the original “Hamilton” had not yet been produced. And when the pact was signed, the actual “Hamilton” musical was not yet on the radar for a Honolulu run – in December of this year, at Blaisdell Concert Hall — so the outlook changed.

The New York “Playkill” for “Spamilton.”

“In accordance with the original producer’s agreement, and we believe the MVT audience experience will be greatly enhanced after having the opportunity to attend a live performance of ‘Hamilton,’ we have made the artistic decision to produce the Hawaii premiere of ‘Spamilton; in 2023, following the conclusion of the run,” said Kip Wilborn, MVT executive director, in a statement..

Wise move – I’ve seen ‘Spamilton’ in New York, in its early run off-Broadway, and it’s true that knowing the ins and outs of the hit show will enhance the appreciation of the humor that is Alessandrini’s signature.  His satiric take is arrow-sharp, but the laughs and pokes are gentle and tend to mold the experience as an homage to Lin Manuel Miranda as an admired and worshipped Broadway super trouper.

Though many here have watched “Hamilton” that still is streaming on Disney+, experiencing the live original is truly a key to enjoying what’s in store in the parody. …

And that’s Show Biz. …


The month of May marks the formal first-year anniversary of my website,

If you’ve seen some of the posts, mahalo for your interest. For others – it’s never late to join in.

While I experimented and posted articles, columns and reviews during a trial run in March-April of 2021, it wasn’t till May that the website’s theories and plans were fortified.

And here I am. Up and running. Surviving and surprisingly active.

It’s been a fun, productive first-year. It started as a whim, and slowly developed into a resource for mutual communication – via reviews, chatter, some reflection – with an audience mildly or keenly interested in the kind of stuff I used to pursue while fully employed (now retired) from the morning Honolulu Star-Advertiser, which, like it or not, became a one-daily newspaper town when fused with the evening Honolulu Star-Bulletin, which became the combined Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

A self-run website, I’ve focused on the Hawaii entertainment scene, with alternating coverage and attention paid to local music, Waikiki nightlife, Hawaii-based network television, selective movie reviews, Honolulu theater and general show-biz chit-chat.

The website emerged while Hawaii – and the world – was immersed and saddled with the COVID-19 pandemic, when movie-going in theaters and show-watching in clubs and showrooms halted.

Since then, I’ve been following acts and destinations rebound and return into action – think the likes of Henry Kapono and Blue Note Hawaii – as a sense of normalcy returned.

Broadway is all about the energy at Times Square.

Like others, I started returning to dine-in spots that reopened and took in movies initially  with some caution and trepidation.

The one element that that I’ve not yet revisited has been travel. Over the decades, I wrote about some of my trips, normally hopping aboard an airplane two to three times a year. My principal destinations were Japan or New York City, where I would explore the charms of both Tokyo/Osaka and Broadway NYC.

Tokyu Hands, a place for crafters in Japan.

There were instincts and trends to examine, like the marvels of Daiso and Tokyu Hands in Japan, where the crafts sections were an attraction for me in Japan, and the mighty perks and charm of Broadway theater – notably, “Hamilton” the tantamount of all these endeavors – and discuss how difficult and expensive it has become to secure pricey seats especially in the show’s first year run with the original cast, led by creator Lin-Manuel Miranda and Tony winner Leslie Odom Jr. You’ve forgotten, but I’ll remind you: I simply couldn’t find tickets in the time frame of my visit at prices I could afford. So, gulp, I paid $750 per ticket (bought two, for my wife and me), in the next-to-the-last row in the Richard Rodgers Theatre and proclaimed that yes, this was astronomical, but worth it to see the original key players in all their glory. Risks matter .Ditto, money.

The Playbill for “Hamilton”

I happily wrote, a few years later, that I was lucky enough to catch two Island actors in “Hamilton:” Joseph Morales, from Honolulu, in the Chicago company, playing the titular lead role on Sundays, but now doing the Hamilton lead in a re-launched national touring company, and Marc delaCruz, from the Big Island, in the ensemble and understudying both the Hamilton and the King George roles in the Broadway company.

Tracking such accomplishments is my mission; sharing that kind of achievement is my privilege.

My Show Biz column, which was part of the daily paper for 45 years before I retired in 2008 (and appearing for another dozen years as a freelancer), has been the primary venue for my reportage. It’s hard to believe, in retrospect, that I posted more than 170 Show Biz columns since this website was launched. Can’t begin to count or accurately assemble the number of print columns filed over the decades.

Column logo

As part of the mission of the website, I periodically take nostalgic strolls down memory lane – 14 so far, and counting — to reflect on old traditions of growing up in Hawaii and remembering such stalwart musical greats and popular venues now gone, too. People like reminiscing about the fave places they frequented, whether it was the Civic Auditorium for early-era rock shows championed by budding entrepreneur and show presenter Tom Moffatt, Char Hung Sut for manapua, or Bea’s for custard pie.

Thus, life issues have been part of the plan, sharing and comparing aches and pains of transiting to seniorhood.

In a sometime frivolous but popular mode, I’ve posed questions in a Just Asking feature, tackling such matters as why Libby’s corned beef still comes in a tin can with a key or seeking responses from readers to list songs with Monday in their titles or wondering how folks are coping with high gasoline prices.

I’ve also shared my decades-old tradition of creating lapel pins for Valentine’s, Easter, Halloween and Christmas, and during the pandemic, the pins landed on many facemasks around town

My Hawaii-themed note cards.

My other craft interests have appeared on the site, like my Wild Cards notecards comprised of such designs as aloha shirts, musubi, sushi, pandemic-related face masks, and just recently, a bunch of postcard-inspired Hawaii notecards. Perhaps I will try to make some of these creations available to the public for purchases. Till now, it’s stress-busting recreational fun to produce these cards, even if card-sending has become nearly extinct in favor of, sigh, emailing.

The website would not have been part of my game plan, were it not for tech whiz Ryan Ozawa, who emailed one day asking why I didn’t have my own site but proceeded to register my name to make the impossible possible. So a huge mahalo to Ryan, who was the one who pushed the button (and me) to kick off the proceedings. And please, Ryan, when your hectic pace subsides, please let me know how much I owe you for keeping the site. up and running.

And to followers and friends, old and new, thank you for your interest and support. I toiled long and hard back in the day, but the current jolt of busy-ness has been the best panacea for a retiree  with some pain issues who still adores activities and creativity to keep the ticker pumping.