2023 Music Immersive Fellows

Aolani Yukie Silva, is an 18 year old, homeschooled high school graduate (class of 2022). She began her passion for music and performing at a very young age. At age 5, she started dancing hula at Wahiawa Hula Studio II under the direction of Kumu Kanani Oliveira and she continues hula today. She released a song called “Tides” in August 2022 and is working on her first album, which is being produced by Imua Garza of Zeo Music Hawaii. She is an entertainer, singer, songwriter, hula dancer, TV hostess, emcee, worship leader and the Miss Teen American Scholar 2022 National Queen.

Aolani grew up listening to different types of music genres, especially those from her cultural backgrounds. She sings all types of music and specializes in singing traditional Japanese Enka and Hawaiian songs. She began hosting her own weekly show since November 2018 at the age of 14, called “The Aolani International Show” at the Ala Moana Shopping Center, Shirokiya Japan Village Walk. She creates songs and music, which incorporates her mixed cultural heritage, to inspire and encourage the younger generation to embrace their cultural background(s).

Don May is a Hawaii based, award winning singer/songwriter and music producer originally from Austin Texas. He writes primarily in the Country/Americana genre but is comfortable and experienced writing across multiple genres including pop, rock, singer/songwriter, traditional country and blues. He has performed in Nashville, LA, Hawaii and all across Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma.

As a songwriter he has worked as a staff songwriter for Sony/ATV music publishing, Curb/Word Music and JEN Music Publishing- all based in Nashville Tennessee. He has had several compositions recorded by up and coming Nashville recording artists, and has co- written with many of Nashville’s most successful songwriters and producers including several Grammy winners and Nashville Songwriters Hall Of Fame inductees. Don has been an active member of Hawaii Island’s songwriting community, hosting episodes of “A Song Circle”, a songwriters-in-the-round live streamed show for Kahilu Theater and kahilu.tv.

Drew Henmi  is an award-winning singer/songwriter/producer from Honolulu. He graduated Cum Laude from Schidler College of Business, UH Manoa, in 2011.  Since beginning his synch journey in 2020, he has created over 250 songs/cues for a variety of agencies and libraries. His music has been featured on campaigns for brands including the NFL, Levi’s, Steve Madden, and on a wide range of critically acclaimed TV shows on US networks ABC, CBS, and TNT.

Dwayne Andres is a songwriter, music producer, musician, and recording engineer from Hawaii. His music journey began in high school in the vocal group “The Schools Boys” with Bruno Mars. He moved to Hollywood CA, and attended the Musicians Institute, where he studied recording engineering. His work as a producer under the name “Drehz” includes 5 independently released albums, and his music has been placed on the Bejing 2022 Winter Olympics and in hit TV shows including Dancing With The Stars, Lifetime’s Dance Moms, BET’s Soul Train Awards, and many others. Dwayne now resides in Honolulu, and collaborates with various artists producing, R & B, and Hip-Hop music.

Evan Fujimoto is a music producer and songwriter from Honolulu, Hawaii who originally had an upbringing in classical music and wind ensembles. Fujimoto graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Hawaii at Manoa in 2017, but always had an interest in music composition since graduating high school. He gained an affinity toward visual media and filmmaking during his senior year in college after he purchased his first camera, but he never strayed far away from his original love of music. He arranged and has been arranging part of the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warrior Marching Band halftime show performance music from 2017 to the current day. During the shutdown of the 2020 pandemic, he learned how to produce electronic dance music (EDM) under the alias, ETRNL. Fujimoto’s release of Make Me Forget featuring Chinese singer and actress Ann-E1 reached #23 on CloudMusic’s Soaring Chart and #6 on China’s Global Song Chart with over 200,000 streams and counting. He released his debut single, “Jellyfishes,” in 2021 along with a remix album, album release party, and music video (which he directed), which was shot with themes of ocean safety awareness. The sales from their album release party and music video world premiere benefitted the non-profit ocean safety organization, Big Wave Group. In 2022, Fujimoto became involved with TheBrewz, a songwriting and music production collective based in Kakaako, Honolulu, and has since been working very closely with them on sync projects, artist collaborations, business growth, and more.

Jaslyn Loftin, AKA J.Lyn is a singer, songwriter, and producer specializing in the R&B, Pop, Lo-fi/Hip-Hop, Indie- Pop, and EDM genres. As a performer, she has performed in world-renown venues such as the Troubadour in Los Angeles and the Blue Note Hawaiʻi with ukulele virtuoso, Jake Shimabukuro. J.Lyn graduated from the MELE (music & entertainment learning experience program) at Honolulu Community College in 2017 with an AS in Music Business and earned her BFA in music at California Institute of the Arts in 2020. That same year, she penned the EDM hit “Make Me Forget” by Chinese-Pop Singer, Ann-E1, which gained over 250,000 streams on NetEase Cloudmusic, reaching #23 on the Cloudmusic Soaring Chart and #6 on China’s Global Song Chart. She also partnered with TikTok for their Creative Learning Fund, sharing songwriting and music business tips on the platform. This year, J.Lyn was a co-writer for the self-titled debut EP of alternative-pop band, Kennedy Taylor & the Electric Pancakes, which was nominated for “Alternative Album of the Year” at the 2022 Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards. She was also a college scholarship recipient for the 2022 Hawai’i Songwriting Festival.

Jazara Hutton is a 20 year old Pop Artist/Songwriter from Santa Barbara, California. In 2019 she was accepted into a one-year intensive music program called LIMPI (founded by Stargate located in Lillehammer, Norway). Through that year she was mentored by Emily Warren, Sarah Hudson, Fred Ball, Autumn Rowe, and many others. Before her overseas adventures she had a chance to perform in front of Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryant. As well as opening for Gavin Degraw, Elle King and performing multiple local Santa Barbara shows with Kenny Loggins. She has also been involved with Durango Songwriters Expo in California and Colorado and the Hawaii Songwriters Festival on the Big Island of Hawaii. She was invited to South Korea (November 2022) by Marcan to write K-Pop for Starship Entertainments artist and has been contacted by European labels throughout the year. As she steps into 2023 she’s excited and ready to move further into the music industry and start releasing more music.

Kala’e Parish has been a professional musician and entertainer in Hawai’i since 2013 performing throughout the islands and abroad. In 2016, he began his solo journey as an artist performing at steady spots in Honolulu and recording his very first EP. This EP titled “Where I Reside” hit the airwaves in December 2020. With all original songs written and composed by Kala’e, this eclectic, 6-track EP is a fresh twist of music from pop country infused with lyrics about his island home to smooth Latin rock to love ballads. In 2020, Kala’e was a featured songwriter on Kuha’o Maunakea, an 18-track compilation album with some of Hawaii’s top performers and was recognized at the 2020 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards for his composition of “We Are a Voice” featured on that album. In 2021, “Where I Reside” by Kala’e won a Na Hoku Hanohano Award for Extended Play (EP) of the year. Kala’e has performed with top artists Henry Kapono, Brother Noland, and John Cruz to name a few. Recently, Kala‘e attended the 2022 Hawai‘i Songwriting Festival and won 3rd place in the Festival’s songwriting competition. As a Hawai’i Island artist residing in beautiful Waimea, he continues to perform regularly throughout all the islands and is actively in the recording studio with new original music to be released soon.

Kalenaku Parish is the former keyboardist and vocalist for the group Kapena from 2006-2021. She was classically trained in piano and voice, and grew up playing music with her father in Waikiki. She released her first Island Reggae single, “Hideaway” in 2010, and earned her first Na Hoku Hanohano Award nomination. In 2017, Kalenaku along with the group Kapena, released their first full length album “palena Ole”, earning four Na Hoku Hanohano awards. She opened her non-profit music school, Kapena School of Music, and she continues performing while running the school as executive director.

Matt Glickstein is a songwriter and musician from Lanai City, Hawaii. He grew up playing piano, and fell in love with creating music when he wrote an original composition for his high school graduation. Since then, Matt has made it his mission to make the world a better place through his music.  In 2012, Matt wrote and produced an original CD with the Lanai High and Elementary School class of 2020 called “Songs For a Better World,” which received both local and national recognition. Matt is currently co-writing with various pro and emerging artists. Several of his songs are signed/represented by Washington Street Publishing and Song Rocket music. He is also a student of pro writer/song coach James Kocian. His new musical, Crawlspace: A True Crime Musical, written with lyricist and book writer, Jason Spraggins was premiered with a series of performances at Tennessee Tech University in November 2022. Matt also loves working with children, and combined his passions by founding the Lana’i Academy of Performing Arts (LAPA), a 501(c)3 non-profit organization (www.lanaiacademy.org). Now the Executive Director, Matt has also served as music director for every LAPA musical (11) since the organization was formed in 2013. He co- wrote the original musicals “Island Below the Star” (2013) and “Day of Conquest: A Story of Kaululāʻau (2019), which were performed by LAPA. In 2019, Matt was chosen as one of eight American dramatic educators to be honored at the Musical Theater International Junior Theater Festival with the prestigious Freddie G Fellowship award.

Ninamarie Jeffrey is a singer-songwriter from Hawai’i island. Initially turning to songwriting on her acoustic guitar as an expression outlet while attending Cal Poly Humboldt, Ninamarie used it to deepen her connection to herself & others while pursuing a BA in Politics. After graduating and returning home to Hawai’i, she broadened her craft alongside a career in luxury hospitality by moonlighting as a vocalist in bands playing hotel shows before breaking out as a solo artist for private events. Prior to participating in her first-ever Hawaii Songwriting Festival in 2022, she built & launched two online businesses to gain freedom & support her artistry through digital entrepreneurship. In addition to focusing on original song development, Ninamarie is currently co-writing & recording on projects with respected industry songwriters & producers. Releases are expected in early 2023, beginning with a debut single.

Sarah Bethany Surprenant (AKA Sarah Bethany) is aHawai‘i Island singer/songwriter/musician. Originally from Minneapolis and St. Louis native, she persued classical studies at the UMKC Conservatory of Music, where she focused on piano performance and music composition, eventually culminating in a Bachelor of Arts in Music. This led her to professional vocal studies for many years with private coach, James Meny. She later went on to study music production at Berklee Online. Sarah has extensive performance experience as a band leader, keyboard player, songwriter, and vocalist. She was a member of the house band at the Hawai’i Songwriting Festival for many years, and had the honor of accompanying legendary artists such as Kenny Loggins, John Cruz, Amy Stroup, Richard Harris, Jason Blume, Adam Zelkind, and Pam Sheyne. She has also performed with Grammy Award winning jazz giants, Eric Marienthal and Donald Harrison, and opened for world renowned saxophonist, Javon Jackson, as well as opening for Wayne Toups, Grammy Award winner and creator of the Zydecajun genre (cajun, zydeco, r&b, and rock combined).

In 2021, Sarah cofounded a production team and boutique library called Mana Music & Media, alongside musical geniuses, Michael Surprenant and Bryan Crook (orchestrator for Motown the Musical and Olivier winner for best new musical, Back to the Future). Also on the team are August Eriksmoen (Olivier Award recipient, Grammy nominee, Drama Desk nominee, Tony Award nominee) and Dave Pierce (Emmy Award winner for best music direction on television for the 2010 Winter Olympics, currently working with Michael Bublé and David Foster). Two of Mana Music’s songs are being placed in the upcoming season of “Sacrifice” on BET+. Ten production tracks have been added to the Viacom Library and a custom track is being used to accompany an actor’s voice on the upcoming season of “The Game” on Paramount +. also working on a collection of songs in different stages of production for her artist project, under the name Sarah Bethany.