Kumu Hula Sylvia Puananiha`aheo Edgar has been a Kumu Hula since the age of 15 years old.
Kumu Puanani was trained in hula in her early teens by Kahu Haina “Hienie” Kalehualaha`ole Blaisdell. Kahu Hienie and his halau, including Puanani, were the first halau in history, outside of the Hawaiian Islands, to participate in the Merrie Monarch Hula Competition back in April 1977. As an adult, to further her education in hula, she `uniki through Loea Kawaikapuokalani Hewett. She has had her own award winning halau, Hula Halau O Puananiha`aheo, in Ventura, CA for 13 years; www.puanani.org. As a Kumu Hula she emphasizes the preservation of the Hawaiian culture through hula, oli, music, and lei making.
Kumu Puanani is an active member of the Kumu Hula Association of Southern California, Kulia I Ka Punawai. She has recorded 3 CD’s with Punawai and is a member of NARAS (National Academy of Recording Arts & Science). Kumu Puanani is extremely proud of her affiliation with 6 time GRAMMY winner Daniel Ho as his choreographer. She has choreographed signature piece hulas to Daniel’s original music. Kumu Puanani was the choreographer of the hula “Aloha `Oe” in the Hawaiian Airlines music video with GRAMMY winner Tia Carrere. This video has been viewed over 500,000 times on YouTube.com. Kumu Puanani had the great opportunity to work with Marco Beltrami & Buck Sanders on the Soul Surfer movie (2011) soundtrack. She was one of the Hawaiian vocal artists on the soundtrack.