Ka Lei Maile Ali’i, the Re-enactment

Ka Lei Maile Aliʻi, the Re-enactment

Performance of Ka Lei Maile Ali‘i – The Queen’s Women at Waimānalo Beach Park for Ho‘olohe Pono, July 20, 2016.


Ka Lei Maile Ali‘i – The Queen’s Women was written by Helen Edyth Didi Lee Kwai.  Didi intended to create an “experience” of what it was like for our kūpuna to participate in the signing of the Kū‘ē Petition. The actors are also part of the audience.

The drama portrays a meeting of the Hui Aloha ‘Āina o Nā Wahine, the Women’s Hawaiian Patriotic League, in the Salvation Army Hall in Hilo in 1897.  The entire meeting was held in ‘Olelo Hawai‘i, but one woman present spoke only English.  She was Miriam Michelson, a reporter from the San Francisco Call newspaper.  Ms. Michelson sat with an interpreter, who shared with her in English everything that was said during the meeting and, as a good reporter would, Michelson took notes.  On her way home to San Francisco, while aboard the steamship Australia, Michelson wrote the article that was featured on the front page of the SF Call titled, “Strangling Hands Upon a Nation’s Throat.”  In it she described the efforts of Mrs. Ku‘aihelani Campbell and Mrs. Emma Nāwahī to rally the maka‘ainana to support the Queen and the country by signing a petition protesting annexation of Hawai‘i to the United States.  The drama, Ka Lei Maile Ali‘i – the Queen’s Women, is a re-enactment based on the newspaper article describing that meeting.

The drama was first presented in 2001 at the Kana‘ina Building on ‘Iolani Palace grounds .  It has been presented numerous times since then to audiences on Hawai‘i island, Maui, Kaua‘i, and ‘Oahu, as well as in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and in Washington D.C.  The script is also shared with organizations interested in learning more about Hawai‘i’s history during the time of the overthrow of the government in 1893 and the unsuccessful attempt by the United States to annex Hawai‘i in 1898.  Teachers often request use of the script as a teaching tool.  We are available to travel to your location on ‘Oahu and/or to assist you with your own performance.  Generally, a historical overview is presented to provide context prior to the performance.

You can download the script here.
Ka Lei Maile Aliʻi is based on this newspaper article written in 1897.

All events are free and open to the public.  For more information or to find out how you can be involved, contact Lynette Cruz at palolo@hawaii.rr.com or phone (808) 284-3460.

Ke Ola Magazine,


Our KLMA branch members will perform Ka Lei Maile Ali‘i for you by request. Contact Lynette Cruz at palolo@hawaii.rr.com, 808-284-3460.