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Arts Education for Children Group is a Non-Profit organization, dedicated to providing opportunities for artistic and cultural enrichment. Additionally AECG is committed to improving the quality of education in our schools by restoring music programs and restoring public awareness about the importance of participation in music and the arts.

Arts Education for Children Group

Founded in 1996, Arts Education For Children Group (AECG ) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing opportunities for artistic and cultural enrichment for the people of Maui. Additionally, AECG is committed to improving the quality of education in our schools by restoring music programs and raising public awareness about the importance of music participation.

AECG has grown from a grassroots, parent-driven effort to enrich their own children’s lives, to a glowing example of a cooperative, community-wide program. A program that addresses a critical need for arts education and after-school activities among Maui’s elementary school aged children. Incorporated as a nonprofit organization in 1998, AECG’s mission was dedicated to restoring support for music and arts enrichment programs in Maui’s schools and raising public awareness of the positive impact music and arts participation has on students.

During the early years, AECG developed and operated successful after school arts and cultural enrichment programs at Sacred Hearts School, Pukalani Elementary, Haleakala Waldorf, Emanuel Lutheran, King Kamehameha III, and The West Maui Boys and Girls Club. The after-school programs were developed to offer quality arts enrichment for students whose parents worked during the after-school hours. The goal was to provide a quality arts and cultural enrichment program at the school so parents did not have to leave work to transport their children to art, music, dance, drama, and vocal classes. The students were given help with homework, snacks, and an opportunity to experience a variety of arts and cultural classes which, in many cases, would have been unaffordable for their parents.

The AECG programs initially consisted of three basic components: 1) Daily after-school programs; 2) Day camps on school holidays; and, 3) Summer music and arts enrichment workshops and camps. The main objective of these programs was to expose children to all aspects of the visual and performing arts by creating a positive, nurturing environment -- a place for qualified professionals to share their knowledge and talents and encourage children to explore their own creativity and discover their own artistic talents.

Through the efforts of an active, hands-on Board of Directors and dedicated professional staff, AECG forged partnerships with the Department of Education, local private schools, and youth programs and developed a comprehensive range of arts and music education programs. Annually, these served more than 300 Maui children between the ages of six and ten years old.

AECG progressively expanded availability and number of children served to meet the growing demand and interest in its exciting educational programs.

1998 brought the launch of the “Music and Performing Arts Camp” and in 1999, the “Summer Strings Workshop” series. These two camps offered students hands-on instrument training in keyboards, brass, woodwind instruments and strings as well as instruction in all aspects of the performing arts. Qualified guest faculty from across the U.S. were used to create an all encompassing camp environment where children were encouraged to explore, create, and use their imaginations in constructive ways, allowing them to discover their hidden artistic talents.

In 2003, AECG partnered with other nonprofit community service organizations to sponsor the Nassau Suffolk Performing Arts 2003 Maui Series, a ten day series of workshops and free concerts involving accomplished musicians from one of New York’s most prestigious performing arts groups and local musicians from Maui’s intermediate and high schools. AECG has developed this series into the annual Maui Invitational Band Festival, a unique opportunity for students of all ages and skill levels to learn from acclaimed music professionals in a classroom setting and in concert. (See Story Below)

Another milestone was reached in 2005 with the creation of the first ever Maui Youth Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Iolani Yamashiro.

AECG continues to support the arts through its education programs and special events such as the annual Maui Invitational Band Festival. The organization is invigorated with each new student that participates. It continues to grow and thrive thanks to to support from all aspects of our community including government, educators, performers, businesses, civic groups, foundations, and individuals.

About Our Events

To support our mission, AECG presents exciting educational and entertaining events each year including the Maui Invitational Band Festival, Maui Cultural Diversity Days Celebration, and Black History Month.​

Maui Invitational Band Festival

An annual music based cultural/educational experience, the Maui Invitational Band Festival was created in 2003 to provide opportunities for Maui students and residents to study and play alongside world class professionals. The Festival includes workshops, clinics, and concerts that create cultural and artistic exchanges.


Open to vocalists and musicians of all ages, the workshops and clinics are separated by skill level only. Scholarships and tuition subsidies offered by AECG insure that musicians and vocalists of all ages can participate.

Over the years, the Festival has been supported by the County of Maui and Hawaii Tourism Authority along with music educators, performers, businesses, civic groups, foundations, and individuals.

History of the Maui Invitational Band Festival

In 2003, Arts Education for Children Group partnered with other nonprofit community service organizations including The County of Maui and the Hawaii Tourism Authority to sponsor the Nassau Suffolk Performing Arts 2003 Maui Concert Series. The ten day series of workshops and free concerts involved accomplished musicians from one of New York’s most prestigious performing arts groups and local musicians from Maui’s intermediate and high schools.

The series was expanded in 2004 and became the Maui Invitational Band Festival. Participation by music students from Mahidol University’s College of Music in Bangkok, Thailand added an international element to the program.

Building on the success of the previous two years, the 2005 Maui Invitational Band Festival introduced an exciting new component featuring performances and workshops by world-class professional musicians, including New York composer Carl Strommen, well-known jazz vibes percussionist Emil Richards, and popular Hawaiian musician/vocalist, Uluwehi Guerrero.

The Festival grew again in 2006 with the participation of well known and accomplished musicians and clinicians. Emil Richards provided instruction and performed side-by-side with student musicians. The Maui Community Band under the direction of Lisa Owen performed with the Nassau Suffolk Performing Arts wind symphony. It also attracted the interest and participation of the famous Los Angeles Music Academy (LAMA), which integrated a Maui-based component into their established summer rhythm camp and concert series. Popular Hawaiian artists were also part of Festival including 2006 Grammy Nominee Raiatea Helm, Peter-Rockford Espiritu and Honolulu’s Tau Dance Theater, Ballroom and Latin dance professional Rita O’Connor, legendary vocalist Emma Veary. slack key guitar virtuoso Henry K. Allen and others who brought students a wealth of experience.

The Fourth Annual Maui Invitational Band Festival held in 2007 again brought accomplished mainland and international instructors to Maui for educational sessions and concerts. The highlight of the festival was the debut of “Haleakala” an original composition by New York Composer Carl Strommen performed by the Maui Community Band. The piece was commissioned by AECG especially for the Festival. Joining Nassau Suffolk Performing Arts Vocal Jazz Ensemble and LAMA, the lineup of instructors included Blues guitarist Colin John and vocalist Sheryl Renee.

Jazz and Blues were featured at the 2008 Festival. Vicki Randle of the Tonight Show Band came to Maui to lead two workshops and perform at free concerts. Colin John returned along with another legendary blues guitarist Michael Hill. Vocalist/actress/playwright Sheryl Renee, Emil Richards and Henry K. Allen also returned to instruct and perform. And, The Maui Community Band under the direction of Lisa Owen performed another original piece commissioned especially for them to play at the Maui Invitational Band Festival entitled “Maui Waltz Medley”. In addition to the clinics, workshops and concerts, informal jam sessions featuring Festival performers and local musicians was held at Cafe Marc Aurel.


Maui Cultural Diversity Days Celebration

The first annual Maui Cultural Diversity Days Celebration was held in January 2008 to honor Martin Luther King Jr. Day. AECG created the event with the hope that through collaboration of diverse cultural participants, residents and visitors would be educated about the many ethnic groups that make up the Maui community. It is AECG’s belief that it is up to us to pass on traditions and encourage children to honor their ancestors and appreciate the sacrifices and contributions made by those who immigrated to Maui.

Highlighted by the professional stage production of “Sistas and Storytellers”, the Maui Cultural Diversity Days Celebration also included workshops, concerts and a free outdoor festival of cultural performances, ethnic foods and traditional crafts. The original stage production “Sistas and Storytellers” promotes cultural awareness and understanding. It played to sold out audiences on t he Mainland with rave reviews before traveling to Maui. Traditional song and dance were performed by Maui groups representing cultures from around the world including: Filipino , Scottish/Irish, Tahitian, Mexican, African, Hawaiian, and World Beat. The finale of the celebration was the “I Have a Dream” concert which included the Maui Gospel Choir and the stage production of an original work, ”We Shall Overcome”.​

Black History Month

A month-long celebration of the accomplishments of African Americans including exhibits and performances. In 2008, the “Stone of Hope” Monument was dedicated. Located at the Maui County Building in Wailuku. The monument is a reminder and a vision for all to enjoy a life of freedom, opportunity, and justice. It honors Dr. King's national and international contributions to humankind, acknowledging his unbridled teachings for achieving social change through non-violent methods. The Stone of Hope reminds the world of his dedication to the idea of achieving human dignity through global relationships, and instill a sense of duty within each of us to be responsible citizens and conscientious stewards of freedom and democracy.

Remember his words, "With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair, A Stone of Hope".


Presented by the non-profit Arts Education for Children Group, Jazz Maui took place from July 28th through August 3rd and featured live performances by Tommy James of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, legendary NYC trumpet player Valery Ponomarev, Maui’s own five-time Grammy® nominated vocalist Amy Hānaiali'i and many more. 


Festival performances offer a rare match up of on and off island talent performing with guest artists, backed by ensembles of local and visiting jazz musicians.


Performances take place at multiple island venues including the Maui Arts & Cultural Center;The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua; the Sheraton Maui Resort and Spa and King Kekaulike High School. A series of free jazz performances will also take place at the Whalers Village Courtyard in Kāʻanapali. (Read more)




Featuring the
13 Piece LA Legacy Jazz Orchestra

"Playing a mix of live ballroom & swing dance music."

1000 square foot dance floor!

A benefit for art and cultural education. (

JazzHawaii 2015

4 outstanding performances
June 14 - July 5



Jazz Maui 2015 Schedule




Jul 01, 2015

presents the Arturo O’Farrill Sextet featuring Jim Seeley.

Daytime workshops in McCoy @ 10am, 1pm, 2:15pm

Arturo O’Farrill, pianist, composer and educator received his third Grammy Award in 2015. When it comes to Latin jazz, Arturo O’Farrill ranks as the modern king of the genre. Trumpeter Jim Seeley has performed with Ray Charles, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, and Maynard Ferguson, and has been a long standing member and featured soloist with the Chico O'Farrill Afro Cuban Jazz Orchestra. The University of Texas Arlington faculty jazz sextet will open the show. There is a preshow courtyard performance by Na Ali`i Big Band (students from King Kekaulike HS on Maui).


Tickets: $35, $45; Sponsored by the Arts Education for Children Group, Hawaii Tourism Authority, and Makana Aloha Foundation with artist booking by Dancin Dave Productions; Master class workshops during the day of the concert require a separate ticket for entry. $20.


Reach For Excellence

Summer Music camp

Video Part 1

Reach For Excellence

Summer Music camp

Video Part 2

Click any link below to see more!

Emil Richards

Jazz Clinic

2010 Classical

Music Festival

LA Music Academy

4th of July Concert

Vocal Jazz Ensemble

Symphonic Band

AECG. All Rights Reserved, 2012. Website design SR Productions

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