18 Jan Kumu Anna Liza McKeon
Anna Liza McKeon has been a teacher for over twenty years. Always willing to pass on what what she has learned and experienced, the majority of those years have been spent teaching the art of Hula dancing and as of late herbalism and plant medicine. Anna Liza found inspiration for dance early in life. As a dancer, she began her journey with ‘Hula Halau he inoa no Ipu Lei Manu’, a dance troupe headed by Denise Bigelow. Driven by a need to expand her knowledge of the Polynesian arts, Anna Liza also sought teachers from different veins of dance and culture. Under the direction of Mapuhi Tuku Tekurio with “Tekurio Nui” she learned Tahitian drumming. With instruction from Mel Liufau of “Nonosina”, she learned the art of Samoan fire Knife dance.
Dancing and performing would eventually lead to teaching. To ensure that what she taught was as authentic and true to the culture, Anna Liza headed back to the Hawaiian islands. Trained on the Big Island of Hawaii, she unikied (graduated) under hula master, Loea Kawaikapuokalani Frank Hewett. Coming from a legacy of legends himself, Kawaikapuokalani Hewett trained under Kumu Hula Emma DeFries, whom was as much a master healer as a teacher, composer and dancer. Hewett was also greatly influenced by another of his teachers, Edith Kanaka‘ole. Edith Kanaka‘ole is a legend in hula and Hawaiian cultural teachings. Her name is revered among hula masters. Under his tutelage, she became a Kumu Hula and was gifted the name, Kumu Hula Anna Liza Kalauokekupukupu Abuan Mc Keon. With her new title and a new mission to teach the old ways of hula, Kumu Anna Liza opened a halau in San Bernardino County. Ever pursuing the expansion of the art she later opened a satellite halau in Topanga and Crestline as well. Currently she spends her time personally teaching in all three schools.
Kumu Anna Liza, or simply Kumu as she is known by her students, has recently begun passing on the knowledge she has acquired through her herbalist studies. Kumu has studied under Sage L. Maurer, founder and director of The Gaia School of Healing in New England. Sage holds a master’s degree in Environmental Education, with a focus on New England plant ecology and ecosystems. Sage has taught courses in sacred plant medicine, ethnobotany, ancestral herbalism, deep ecology, and earth-centered spirituality to thousands of students around the globe. Among those students turned apprentices is Marysia Miernowska. Marysia is a teacher, author, Earth activist, green witch, folk herbalist and healer rooted in the Wise Woman Tradition of Healing. After completing her studies under Sage, Marysia taught courses for the very school she herself was once a student at before founding her own school, The School Of The Sacred Wild. Educated in the ways of the traditional wise women methodology, Kumu now enjoys carrying on the legacy these two women.
It be an honor for Kumu Anna Liza to educate you in the artistry of the Hawaiian history, dance and romantic mythology of Pacific Islands. Sit with her and listen to the ways of the wise woman. Join her on her journey to spread the teachings of the elders that have collectively enriched her soul.
Kumu will be sharing Ancient Hula Dance.