Learn Slack Key

George Kahumoku Jr. 20th Annual
Slack Key Guitar and Ukulele Workshop

June 18-25 2017 — Napili Kai Beach Resort, Napili, Maui

At George Kahumoku Jr.’s workshop, students with varied experience can choose from several levels of classes, from beginning to advanced Hawaiian slack key guitar and ‘ukulele. The workshop also provides students and spouses or partners with numerous cultural activities and classes, such as lei and kapa cloth making, hula, Hawaiian songs and singing, song writing, song history, and lap steel guitar.

2017 will mark the 20th year for the workshop, where once again instruction sessions, meals, and other workshop activities will take place at the beautiful Napili Kai Beach Resort in Napili. Evening kanikapilas (student/instructor jam sessions) will be held at Napili Kai’s Aloha Pavilion.

George Kahumoku Jr. Photo by Shane Tegarden

George Kahumoku Jr. Photo by Shane Tegarden

If you’re a beginning slack key guitar or ukulele player, there is no better way to get started and see rapid improvement over a week of class sessions with some of Hawai’i’s top musicians and music instructors. And if you’re an intermediate or advanced player, you’ll be able to polish your skills, expand your repertoire, and improve your playing to the next level.

Each year, the majority of the workshop participants are returnees, a testament not only to the quality of instruction, but also to the experience of becoming part of the Kahumoku Workshop Ohana. Join us!

Registration for the June 2017 workshop will open September 1st, 2016.  Please return to this page to register online at that time!

View a photo gallery of last year’s workshop.

Our 2016 instructor staff:

  • George Kahumoku Jr. – guitar, songs
  • Ledward Kaapana – guitar, ukulele
  • Jeff Peterson – guitar, ukulele
  • Kevin Brown – guitar, songs
  • Herb Ohta, Jr. – ukulele
  • Paul Togioka  – guitar, ukulele
  • Sterling Seaton – guitar
  • Joel Katz – Hawaiian steel guitar, ukulele
  • Jason Jerome – ukulele
  • Brad Bordessa – ukulele
  • Wainani Kealoha – hula, lei making
  • Wendeanne Ke’aka Stitt – Kapa cloth design and making


Workshop Tuition: For the 2017 Workshop, we will offer two early-bird discount periods:

Registration Period Full Program Cultural Program
Sept. 1 – Oct. 31 $1300 $1000
Nov. 1 – Jan. 31 $1400 $1100
After Jan. 31 (Normal fees) $1500 $1200

The full workshop registration fee includes all instruction (group and private lessons), a workshop T-shirt, one ticket to the SLACK KEY SHOW-“Masters of Hawaiian Music”  at the Napili Kai Aloha Pavilion on Wednesday night, most lunches and dinners from Sunday to Sunday, the Workshop Songbook and Dis N Dat theory/chord book, participation in evening kanikapilas and the Slack Key Festival performance at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center on the final Sunday of the workshop.

The Cultural Program includes classes in Hawaiian language, the Art of Kapa Cloth, Lauhala Weaving, Lei Making, Hula history, tradition, and instruction, and Hawaiian Cooking. All meals, a workshop t-shirt, participation in evening kanikapilas and Slack Key Masters show tickets are also included in this program option.

Non-participating Spouse/Companions: For companions attending with a Full Tuition student, but not participating in the workshop programs, arrangements can be made for participation in workshop meals.

Napili Kai Accommodations: For those students staying at the Napili Kai during the workshop, a special workshop discounted room rate is available. Normally $280 per night and up, room rates for students are $199 (without kitchen) and $209 (with kitchen) per night. There are a limited number of rooms available at this special rate, so workshop attendees are encouraged to make reservations early.
Workshop fees are payable by check, credit card, or PayPal. (An additional service charge is applied to PayPal and credit card payments.)

* The registration fee is fully refundable within ten days of the registration date. After that, a $100 cancellation fee applies.

Classes offered:

  • Slack Key Guitar (beginning, intermediate, advanced)
  • Ukulele (beginning, intermediate, advanced)
  • Hula (male and female)
  • Lei Making
  • Songs and Singing, composition
  • Jamming – Technique, Styles, Etiquette
  • Master Class/Performance Skills
  • Special Topics in Guitar and Ukulele (Instructors’ choice)
  • The Art of Kapa (traditional Hawaiian fabric)
  • Lauhala Weaving
  • Private/small group lessons with instructors

Please note: Classes and topics are subject to change, so check back in early June for the final class list, schedule, and instructor list.



When registration opens on Nov.1, you can register online and pay by credit card or with a PayPal account, or checks can be mailed to:
George Kahumoku
PO Box 12804
Lahaina HI 96761

For more information about the workshop and answers to some of the questions you may have, please visit our FAQ page by clicking the button below:

Read more about the Workshop


Photo from a previous Maui Slack Key Guitar and Ukulele Workshop


Outline Schedule (All workshop sessions are held at the Napili Kai Beach Resort unless otherwise specified)


  • 2 pm – Workshop welcome and orientation for new students
  • 3 pm – 6pm check-in at the Napili Kai
  • 6 pm – Welcome dinner
  • 7:30 pm Kanikapila (jam session) at the Napili Kai.


  • Late check-in and morning group meeting at 8:30 am
  • classes begin 9:15 am,
  • lunch at noon,
  • afternoon classes,
  • 6 pm dinner,
  • 7:30 Kanikapila at the Aloha Pavilion


  • Same as Monday, except that after dinner at 7:30 will be the “student talent show” at the Napili Kai Aloha Pavilion (on stage, support musicians available)


  • Group meeting at 8:30 am
  • classes begin 9:15 am
  • lunch at noon,
  • afternoon is free (dinner on your own),
  • 7:30 SLACK KEY SHOW at the Napili Kai Aloha Pavilion, teachers performing.


  • same as Monday


  • same as Monday


  • classes begin 9:15 am,
  • lunch at noon,
  • some afternoon classes,
  • 3 pm whole group rehearsal for the MACC performance
  • dinner at  6pm,
  • 7:30 kanikapila at the Aloha Pavilion


  • class photo shoot (wearing workshop T-shirt) at Napili Kai,
  • lunch on your own,
  • 11:30 leave for Kahului for the Slack Key Festival at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center (MACC),
  • Kahumoku Workshop performance at the Maui Slack Key Guitar Festival,
  • Final group photo stage-side immediately after the performance. This is the final activity of the workshop.
  • Unofficial pot luck dinner and kanikapila at the Napili Kai Pool (6:30 pm) for those still around Sunday evening.


  • 8:30am Optional staff and student debriefing, discussion, and suggestions for next year. All welcome, but feedback also invited on written forms. Location to be announced.

Any questions? Please Email us

Nancy and George Kahumoku

Private Lesson Via Skype

George Kahumoku is also directing UH Maui’s new Hawaiian Music Institute.