You couldn’t get me on stage. No, not even if you promised me a new pair of shoes. I thought husband, Steve, would be the same way. But put big Tongan drums in front of a man and he turns into a boy.
That’s what happened at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) on the island of Oahu. There are villages throughout the PCC, each representing Polynesian islands in the Pacific, specifically, Aotearoa (New Zealand), Fiji, Hawai’i, Samoa, Tahiti and Tonga, and it is the Tongan show that is a big hit with audiences.
The show begins with a man blowing into a conch shell and drummers begin hammering away on the big drums. It’s the hollow beat, beat, beat that swoops through your chest and were it not for my fear of being looked at, I would have stood up, closed my eyes and started dancing.
The drumming or Tongan ta nafa has five performances a day, Mondays through Saturday. It’s an opportunity to not just see and hear the drumming, but three lucky individuals from the audience get to try their hand at it as well.
Little did I know Steve had a Tongan drummer spirit within him. Yes, my quiet, engineer-type, bookish husband was called up on the stage and he let loose on the drums.
Oh dear. Take a look at the video below. I think you’ll have a good laugh over this one. Afterward, my mother turned to me and exclaimed, “I had no idea Steve was like that at all!” Nor did I.