‘Brighter Days’ at Hawaii Theatre


It’s the circle of life for the I’m a Bright Kid Foundation, which will mark its fifth anniversary beginning this weekend, with a virtual tribute presentation of “Brighter Days,” a retrospective special in the spirit of the earlier “Brighter Still,” from the Hawaii Theatre.

Thus, IABK returns to where its theatrical life began, continuing to preserve the legacy of the late Ron Bright, the veteran director-educator who inspired hundreds of youth to enjoy the magic of theater and scores who actually made it to Broadway.

“Days” will originate from the Hawaii Theatre stage and streamed live beginning at 6 p.m. Sunday (April 18 )to statewide audiences via the Hawaii Theatre and the IABK sites.

Familiar talent, from Bright shows over the last five years. will be featured, including Jade Stice (“Children of Eden” and “Songs For A New ,World”), Bailey Barnes (“The Wiz”), Jade and Michael Bright (“Children of Eden”), Kathleen Stuart (“The King and I”) and, Miguel Cadoy III (“Children of Eden” and “Songs For A New World”).

Other participating actors include Matthew Pederson, Drew Bright, Kaikou Kaimuloa, Austin Pangilinan, Chat Atkins, Michael Cabagbag, Kevin Pease, Alyse Glaser, Selah Fronda, Susan Hawes, and Vanessa Manuel Mazzullo.

Also, students from IABK’s Summer Musical Theatre Arts Education Program (“On Dragonfly Wings,” ”Once On This Island” and “Seussical KIDS will struth their stuff plus unnamed surprise guests will appear.

A suggested donation of $5 per person is suggested. However, other donation tiers are available: $100 for IABK legacy donations or $25 for ohana contributions. For details, go to the Hawaii Theatre events page the IABK website.

The show airs through June 18 through at the IABK YouTube channel. Details: Hawaii Theatre events page (www.hawaiitheatre.com) or on the IABK website (www.iabk.com).

In addition to the streaming, IABK has tapped two Oahu restaurants to provide comfort food dinner to accompany “Brighter Days.”

Café Kalawe (247-9527) in Kaneohe, 46-005 Kawa St., will serve “Mr. B’s Mixed Plate,” and the Honolulu Baking Company (596-2556) in Kakaako, 523 Ahui St., is preparing lasagna or vegetarian pot pie. Meals are $12, with ordering deadline extended to 2 p.m. Friday (April 16).

Further, to promote the “Brighter Days” show, IABK regulars will appear on Manoa Valley Theatre’s “MVT Live” program at 5 p.m. Friday (April 16) with host Devon Nekoba talking story with Miguel Cadoy III, Mary Chesnut Hicks, and Jade Stice. All appear in “Brighter Days.”

Go to www.manoavalleytheatre.com for the live link.

Cadoy is a music teacher at Farrington High School, where he is artistic director of the Farrington Performing Arts Center; Hicks is a veteran voice teacher, opera singer and Iolani School teacher; and Stice is a founding member of IABK and has global acting credits including the original “Miss Saigon” Broadway production.

PHOTO: Bailey Barnes in “The Wiz.”