Aloha Hula Polynesian Dance Studio has been teaching students different styles of Polynesian dance for over 15 years.
GRANADA HILLS, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Lyn-Del Pedersen has been teaching students at Aloha Hula Polynesian Dance Studio in Granada Hills for over 15 years.
"What we try to do is perpetuate the culture and teach our haumna, our students, to understand and respect the origin of the traditions and we do that through song and dance," Pedersen said.
Pederson says what started out as a small studio in her home, has grown to be one of the largest Polynesian studios in the San Fernando Valley.
"I enjoy that they come in here because they want to. I'm humbled by how blessed I am, how fortunate I am to be surrounded by amazing people and a support group," Pedersen said.
"It's family, it's all about family. It's all about ohana it really is," said Kahiau Lefever, an assistant at Aloha Hula Polynesian Dance Studio.
The studio offers different types of Polynesian dances including hula, Samoan and Ori Tahiti, a Tahitian-style dance with a live drum beat.
"I feel grounded and connected to the indigenous roots and just all the elements," said student Maya Mulvihill.
Students have the opportunity to perform in competitions and festivals throughout the year.
"We usually compete about nine to 10 times a year. Right before the pandemic, we had the privilege to travel to Tahiti, the motherland, to compete at the world championships representing the U.S. and it was a really great experience," said Aloha Hula Polynesian Dance Studio Assistant Director Taimane Fiaseu.
Many students say they enjoy performing different types of dances and being able to introduce Polynesian culture and music to others has been a rewarding experience.
"I love to just tell the stories behind our movement," said student Martina Villar.
"To be able to share it with those who are not familiar with it is truly a blessing," said student Melanie Alcala.
Find more information on the studio here.
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