Have you always wanted to learn how to play the ʻukulele? Already on your ʻukulele journey and want to brush up on your skills? Check out our summer ʻUkulele Workshop led by Craig and Sarah! This Honolulu-based couple are performing artists and educators who have spent over twenty years traveling around the world, spreading the joy of ʻukulele to musicians of all ages.

What’s New with the ʻUkulele Workshop?

This year, ʻUkulele Workshop faculty Craig and Sarah want students to get the most out of our 6-day workshop by continuing their practice at home—that’s why every student will be provided with supplemental videos to facilitate their at-home practice! Before the workshop begins, students will receive a pre-event ʻukulele crash course that goes over the basics to help them feel more confident when they finally meet in person. Then throughout the week, they’ll be given class recordings after each session so they can easily review their techniques and everything they’ve learned in class.

The workshop will delve into the many ways of playing the ʻukulele and the various techniques that students can use to create their own sound! They’ll learn to pick fills and solos, master basic to advanced strumming, explore the percussive aspects of the ʻukulele, and more in a collaborative and judgment-free environment. “We’re going to introduce how to play different styles on the ʻukulele but, more importantly, we’re going to learn how to practice these new skills and techniques and apply them to songs we already know,” says Craig.

Meet Craig & Sarah, the Dynamic Duo leading the ʻUkulele Workshop!

Craig Chee is a world-renowned educator and performer who was born and raised right here on Oʻahu! He’s known for his unique, energetic, and fun style of playing the ʻukulele. He began his ʻukulele journey at the Roy Sakuma ʻUkulele Studio in Honolulu and even played cello with the Hawaii Youth Symphony growing up! Since then, he has had the honor of working under local legends like Jake Shimabukuro and Troy Fernandez. 

Sarah Maisel grew up playing the violin in Alabama and fell in love with the ʻukulele in San Diego, where she worked at the La Jolla Playhouse and the University of California San Diego. Studying under mentor Frank Leong, Sarah is heavily inspired by ‘ukulele legends like Lyle Ritz, Benny Chong, and Byron Yasui. She later discovered a passion for teaching and performing on stage and has been invited to play at ʻukulele festivals all over the world!

Since getting married in 2015, Craig and Sarah have dedicated themselves to sharing their craft through teaching, performing, and organizing events. And they are beloved figures in the ʻukulele community due to their infectious energy both on stage and in the classrooms! The combination of their complementing styles and vocal harmonies have led them to be featured in ʻukulele festivals worldwide, performing in countries like Germany, Australia, Japan, England, China, and Canada. 

Come have strum fun this summer!

The best part about our ʻUkulele Workshop is that everyone is welcome—from beginners to intermediate players. The ʻukulele is tiny but mighty, and it’s one of the best instruments to get you started on your musical journey! Here’s what one former ʻUkulele Workshop student had to say about this beloved instrument, “It’s really easy to pick up, and once you know what you’re doing it’s so easy that it’s like second nature….There are so many possibilities that you can learn from other people or yourself.” Even if you’ve been playing the ʻukulele for a few years, there will still be so much to discover at the workshop. And your learning experience will be enriched by the guidance of seasoned professionals and the company of fellow ʻukulele enthusiasts!

Already enrolled and want to add ʻukulele to the mix?

Classically trained young musicians, this workshop might just be your thing! Craig and Sarah will be drawing from their experiences playing the cello and violin respectively to demonstrate how to translate your classical skills to playing the ʻukulele. “Craig and I love being able to take that classical background and apply it to this amazing little instrument,” says Sarah. We made sure to design the schedule so that Strings Program students and Winds, Brass, and Percussion Program students have the option of adding the ‘Ukulele Workshop into their schedule for a full day of music! PMI is the perfect place to pick up a fun new instrument, level up your skills, and meet tons of new friends this summer! Register now to secure your spot in your favorite programs.

Want to up your improvisation game or pick up a fun, new instrument? Students enrolled in the Winds, Brass, and Percussion Program are eligible to sign up for Jazz Intensive Jazz 2 or the ‘Ukulele Workshop!