This summer, the aloha spirit is alive in San Francisco as the Museum of Craft and Folk Art presents the exhibition Evolution of the Ukulele: The History of Hawaii’s Jumping Flea. The exhibition explores the folk tradition and fine craft of the Hawaiian ukulele (the word means “jumping flea” in Hawaiian), which is in the midst of a huge international revival. Played by amateurs far beyond Hawaii who are joining ukulele clubs throughout the U.S., Great Britain, Australia and Japan, the ukulele revival is even showing up on YouTube in performances by professional musicians from Bruce Springsteen to the Jimi Hendrix of the Ukulele, ”Hawaiian Jake Shimabukuro, who will perform in San Francisco in September in conjunction with this exhibition.
Evolution of the Ukulele will be on view at the Museum of Craft and Folk Art at 55 Yerba Buena Lane in downtown San Francisco from August 2 through October 21, 2007. For more information call (415) 227-4888 or visit www.mocfa.org.
The exhibition is the centerpiece for the first-ever San Francisco Ukulele Festival, September 7 and 8, 2007. The festival features two days of performances at Herbst Theater and at the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival. Headlining the San Francisco Ukulele Festival will be the artistry of Jake Shimabukuro, in concert at Herbst Theater on Friday, September 7. The uke-fest continues at Yerba Buena Gardens on Saturday, September 8, from 11am to 4pm, featuring “uke-centric” music of all styles as local musicians perform Hawaiian music, tin pan alley favorites, and uke-driven contemporary pop and country, and sing-alongs with prominent Bay Area ukulele clubs.
Evolution of the Ukulele: The History of Hawaiis Jumping Flea”provides an in-depth history of how a small group of Portuguese immigrants brought the little guitar-like Madeiran machte to Honolulu in 1879, sparking creation of a new and uniquely Hawaiian instrument and sound. The ukulele’s popularity took turn-of-the-century Hawaii by storm, and then swept across the United States, Canada and Great Britain through the early 1900s. As accompaniment to Hawaiian, Hawaiian-inspired, and Tin Pan Alley music, the ukulele resurfaced in the 1950s to inspire everyone from Elvis to the Beatles.
The exhibition will include some of the finest ukuleles ever crafted, including historic 19th-century Hawaiian koa-wood instruments, and new designs created by today’s best ukulele makers. The exhibition is accompanied by samples of over a century of ukulele music, ukulele performances, demonstrations of ukulele production, a hands-on area where visitors can pick up and play a ukulele, and colorful historic sheet music covers from the teens and twenties with titles such as Give “Me a Ukulele” (and a ukulele baby) and “Leave the Rest to Me,” ”Ukulele Lady, ”Ukulele Baby, ”and “Say it With a Ukulele.”
The Museum of Craft and Folk Art and the Museums Gallery Store are located at 51 Yerba Buena Lane, connecting Market and Mission Street between 3rd and 4th Street in San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Gardens arts district. The Museum and Store are open Tuesdays through Fridays, from 11am to 6pm; Saturdays and Sundays, 11am to 5pm. Admission to the Museums galleries is $5; $4 for seniors; children under 18 are free. Museum members enjoy free admission. Admission to the Museums Gallery Store is always free for all visitors. For more information call (415) 227-4888 or visit www.mocfa.org
Official Website: http://www.mocfa.org
Added by ericsf7 on August 29, 2007