Live Aloha Art Festival 2020

Hello there - we’re The New Alchemists , an artist collective building power and possibility for diverse communities through theatre, film, and music. One of our co-founders Brandon Estrella is the third generation of his family to be born and raised in Hilo on the Big Island of Hawai'i. Growing up he experienced firsthand a lack of regular opportunities for an emerging artist to gain training or future local opportunities, leading him to pursue education and work on the mainland.

When Brandon co-founded The New Alchemists in Seattle in 2015 one of his first priorities was establishing a permanent program in Hilo that would allow him to actively give back and contribute to cultural life in his hometown. We traveled to the Big Island in 2016 to produce our first interdisciplinary arts experience with local partners, students, and community members - and it’s grown from there! We are so excited to be returning to Hilo for a third year to produce the second annual Live AlohaArt Festival --but we can’t do it without your support! Please read on to find out more about what we’re doing and who we’re working with: 


Full Life Hawai’i , Abled Hawai’i Artists , East Hawai’i Cultural Center , Kozmo Mimzi Theater  and The New Alchemists  are proud to announce the second annual Live Aloha Art Festival (LAAF), scheduled for January 10-12, 2020, with public workshops beginning January 6.

Featuring live music by local artists, new plays created by a diverse ensemble of community members and students from Waiakea HS and UH Hilo, a short film festival, puppetry, visual art, and conversations that build community by celebrating the rich and complex identities of Hilo’s residents - all programs of the Live Aloha Art Festival will be offered free-of-charge.

During the week leading up to the festival, LAAF artists will lead community workshops in songwriting, community-engaged theatre making, and puppetry with local communities including: Full Life Hawai’i and Abled Hawai’i Artists, Waiakea HS Drama students, the UH Drama Club, and the general public. Check out this amazing community acting ensemble pictured below from 2019 - tasked with creating a new, improvised play in 24 hours! 

43788128_1575235581784757_r.jpegYour gift will help to provide arts programming and performance opportunities, educational workshops, and ongoing networking for over 60 Big Island artists, students, and creatives! LAAF actively instigates exchange and collaboration between artists of different disciplines both on and off-island with the intention of providing additional support and opportunity for Hilo’s artists, with a focus on emerging and nontraditional talent - such as our support of the talented and differently abled artists participating in Full Life programming.

Together, we can increase the number of ongoing, creative projects that help to activate downtown Hilo - making it a more vibrant city center for the entire community. Pictured below are two of our superstar Full Life actors, Maya and Daylan, who bring so much joy to our work each year! 

For a full schedule of events and current updates, visit our Facebook Event Page here ! 

We do this work because we believe that ACCESS TO ART IS A HUMAN RIGHT - and that the most compelling stories and experiences are built with, by, and for the communities they are intended to reach. We hope you’ll be a part of helping us to make LAAF possible in 2020. We produce this festival on a tight budget - and every dollar counts. You can rest assured knowing that a gift of any size will have a real impact on our project.

Here are the different ways you can choose to be involved: 

$500 - Sponsor the #Puppets4Peace Parade 
Get a puppet designed and featured in the parade mailed to you, photos and an update on the parade in 2020, and a social media shoutout! 

$250 - Sponsor 1 Puppet Making workshop for 30 artists
Get photos and an update on the parade in 2020, and a social media shoutout! 

$100 - Sponsor an independent, local film at the film festival 
Get an update on the Film Festival, and links to several of the short films in order to watch them online any time you wish

$75 - Sponsor a workshop for 25 students at Waiakea HS 
Get photos and an update on the workshops in 2020, and a social media shoutout!

$50 - Sponsor a songwriter in the songwriters showcase 
Get photos and an update on the workshops in 2020, and a social media shoutout! 

$25 - Sponsor an actor in the weekend devising workshop 
Get photos and an update on the 24-hour play festival in 2020, and a social media shoutout! 

$10 - General Love & Support 
Social media shoutout - no amount is too small and we appreciate support at all levels! 


Donations ()

  • Mark Kaiklian 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Wesley Fruge 
    • $20 
    • 1 mo
  • Sam Raabe 
    • $100 
    • 1 mo
  • Teresa Thuman 
    • $50 
    • 1 mo
  • Amber Tafoya 
    • $50 
    • 1 mo
See all


Lily Raabe 
Hilo, HI
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