The Company

Wai Company creates original and provocative contemporary and aerial dance performances while advocating mutual cultural understanding through their work. Wai Company’s arts education program promotes the transformational power of dance and theater by offering aerial and modern dance classes within local and global communities.

Brian Alsola Wailana Simcock
Brian Alsola “Wailana” Simcock (Founder, Director)

Wailana Simcock was born in the Philippines to a Pinay mother and a New Zealand father and was raised in O‘ahu, Hawai‘i since the age of 5. He is fluent in Tagalog and Hawaiian languages and is deeply informed by his own and of Hawaii’s indigenous ways of knowing. Within his experience of his own Asia-Pacific diaspora, Simcock continues to navigate through issues of indigeneity, colonization, globalization, gender politics, and environmentalism, which have become influences in the kind of creative work and research that he finds so important.

His teaching specialties includes contemporary dance technique; dance improvisation; choreography; acting; physical theater; contact improvisation; somatic practices of yoga and bodywork; Hawaiian studies and language; and aerial dance.

While growing up swimming and surfing in the warm ocean of Hawai‘i, Simcock became a nationally awarded figure skater at age 12. At age 21, he embarked on his professional career as modern dancer with cultural activist and choreographer Pearl Ubungen of Pearl Ubungen Dancers and Musicians (PUDM) in San Francisco in 1996. He later became PUDM’s principal dancer and subsequently traveled all over the US continent and to the Philippines with them. He has studied with dance luminaries Joe Goode, Kathleen Hermesdorf, Stephen Pelton, Barbara Dilley, and aerial dance with Terry Sendgraff, Iona Dance Theater, Samadhi Hawai‘i, Ana Prada, and Air Aligned. Most noteworthy of his many performances are his work as a dancer and chanter for the groundbreaking production of ‘Ulalena (2007-08) and as the lead dancer in Garin Nugroho’s latest dance film, Salesi (2016).

Simcock also received monies from the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and Arts to help fund the Kalani Performing Arts Festival (2010-12), a festival he directed with a mission to educate and preserve Hawaiian language and culture with music, acting, and dance. In 2010, he founded Wai Company, a contemporary and aerial dance performance group. Wai Company has taught and performed in Fiji, Ireland, and Scotland and was a featured group in the Asia Pacific Dance Festival, Honolulu (2015). In Spring 2016, Simcock received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.


ʻO Kapono Aiwohi-Kim koʻu inoa (Mea Oli – Chanter, Dancer). No Hoʻolehua, Molokaʻi mai au. I am a Dance, Hawaiian Studies and Language major at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. I am interested in lāʻau lapaʻau (Hawaiian medicinal plants) and also hula. I enjoy dancing, hiking, swimming and cruising with my friends. I am planning to have my own dance company and also teach the medicinal purposes of Hawaiian plants. Mahalo nui loa, Kapono




Lucy Braham



Lucy Braham (Master Rigger, Dancer). Originally from London, UK, Lucy has danced with Wai Company since its founding in 2010, performing in Laka (2010), Supernature (2011), theKalani Performing Arts Festivals, and #55 Circle Island / HI Fructose Corn Syrup (2014.) She also studied and performed with Shizuno Nasu in Volcano and Hilo, HI. Lucy has trained in modern and aerial dance with Wailana Simcock and with Annie Bunker at UH Hilo; and in Honolulu with Lori Ohtani (butoh), Betty Jones and Fritz Ludin (modern), and in aerial dance at Samadhi Hawai‘i. She also has a background in martial arts. She taught aerial dance and authentic movement classes at Kalani Oceanside Retreat (2012-2013). Lucy holds a masters degree in Somatic Psychotherapy from California Institute of Integral Studies, and is a dance/movement therapy intern in Honolulu, leading creative movement groups at a therapeutic pre-school. She brings her rock-climbing background to her role as aerial rigger for Wai Company.




Sequoia Carr-Brown


Sequoia Carr-Brown (Dancer) is a University of Hawaii graduate and company dancer with: Convergence Dance Theatre, Giinko Marischino, Iona Contemporary Dance Theatre, and Wai Company. She is also director or her own performance art company, StRaNgE FrUiT XPrEsS. Her most recent performances include: Moving Voices with Hawaii Academy of Performing Arts and Ke Kini o Lalo Productions, Dancing Balloons at Honolulu Dance Festival, Shakti’s Den at ArtZone, Finding Shelter at Loading Zone, Etched at Fringe, Dearly Departed at Day of the Dead Fest, Orient Express with Iona, and Global Dance Café. She is also a fitness instructor at Still and Moving Center, Honolulu.

Sequoia has performed extensively in Tokyo for American troops and their families and was invited as a guest speaker for a career practicum program and women’s history month. While studying in Europe, Sequoia served as co-president of The Association of Fine Arts, where the association received local media coverage and official recognition from the village mayor. The association’s mission created a place for German and American artists of all media to develop and express their talent. During her time in Germany, Sequoia launched the social political branch of her performance arts company, StRaNgE FrUiT XPrEsS. The company provided studio space for local dancers, conditioning classes, and held three exhibitions. Her signature work, Constructed: Red, White, and Blue received full news coverage and thoughtful reviews.

Sequoia was also a former coordinator and dancer with the GiRL FeST/Safe Zone Honolulu Foundation’s dance division. Some of her performances include: the premiere of Strange Fruit XPrEsS, “AnaRexa” at a Sunset on the Beach event, and “Nigga of the World” and “The P-Word” that was accompanied by University of Hawaii professor, Dr. Kathryn Takara’s poetry at the Hawaii Theatre. She has performed in ensembles under the direction of Sami Akuna’s, Giinko Marischino Dance Troupe. Troupe has been featured in Leeward Community College’s annual dance festival and at the Hawaii Theatre. Past performances include: Melissa Teodoro’s poignant No Mas, held at Western Washington University for the American Dance Festival, Jennifer Butler’s, Touched by Fire, and former Pilobolus principal and University of Hawaii alumnus Daryl Thomas’ Girl Tribe at the Kennedy Theatre.

Sequoia’s art has been exhibited and sold in Chicago, Colorado, Germany, and Hawaii. Sequoia’s dance inspired a 120 x 40 painting titled Bailar de Brasil, which was displayed in the University of Hawai’i Dance Building over two years. She has exhibited works in the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Commons Gallery, Art’s at Mark’s Garage in Honolulu, Galerie Bilderbucher in Amberg, Germany, and the Still and Moving Center in Honolulu.

She is the founder and president of Strange Fruit XPrEsS, whose mission is to open artistic education centers that engage the community through outreach workshops designed to encourage empowerment. She envisions establishing a foundation dedicated to exposing disenfranchised populations to people and places that embrace diversity. The center will focus on developing confidence in creating art that expresses social concerns and praises social progress of historical significance.


Elizabeth Grote


Elizabeth Grote (Dancer) has been dancing since her first leap at the age of three. Elizabeth studied Ballet under the tutelage of Charlys Ing for over twelve years at Hawaii Ballet Theater. Elizabeth studied jazz, ballet, tap, musical theater and acrobatics at Punahou Dance School. After discovering Modern dance in college, Elizabeth has been inspired to continue her passion for dance and performance art with Iona Contemporary Dance Theater since 2001. Elizabeth has taught ballet and creative movement at the Movement Center, Honolulu Dance Studio and pre-ballet at Premier Steps. Elizabeth also performs with Giinko Marishcino. Elizabeth has been training with Wai Co. since June 2013. Elizabeth has a Masters of Science in Counseling Psychology and worked for the past five years as the Community Programs Coordinator at Ka Hale Ho ‘ala Hou No Na Wahine, a work furlough, where she helped empower women to successfully transition from prison to the community through enrichment, community service and family strengthening activities. Elizabeth is currently the Program Coordinator for Project Visitation at Family Programs Hawaii helping siblings separated in foster care maintain relationships by coordinating monthly visits with their sibling groups. Elizabeth would like to thank her family, her beasts and fellow dancers for supporting her dreams and their enduring support and love.



Jamie Nakama

Jamie Nakama (Dancer) was born on the island of Oahu, spent some time in the Midwest US, and found home again in Hawaii some 13 years ago. She has studied many forms of dance including jazz, tap, modern, West African, Afro-modern, butoh, and aerial dance. In addition to Wai Co, Jamie performs with Iona Contemporary Dance Theater, Samadhi Hawaii, Tau Dance Theater and dances hula with Ka La Onohi Mai O Haehae. Along with her love of dance, she’s been training capoeira (Brazilian martial arts/dance) since 2002 with Mestre Kinha of Capoeira Besouro Hawaii and currently teaches capoeira classes for kids and adults.

Jamie holds a bachelor’s degree in life sciences, studio arts, and dance from the University of Minnesota, and a master’s degree in ecological anthropology from the University of Hawaii. Besides being a dancer/performer/capoeirista, she is the Education Program Manager at the Hawaii Nature Center (non-profit environmental education center). She also teaches anthropology at Kapiolani Community College, where she is a member of the Faculty Senate on Sustainability. Dedicated to educating and making positive change involving sustainability, the environment, and our human connection to the land, Jamie is grateful for this opportunity to use arts and performance as a way to spread awareness on such critical issues that concern all of humanity.



Raina Racki


Raina Racki (Dancer) is thrilled with the exhilarating opportunity of dancing and flying with Wai Company here on Oahu. She began training and performing in the Midwest with Stefannie Valencia Kierlin in ballet before diving onto the floor with modern dance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she received her BFA in Dance. A few previous company credits include Convergence Dance Theater, Iona Contemporary Dance Theater, Waikiki Nei production, and Ohi’a Productions on Oahu, City Ballet Theatre of Milwaukee, Chicago Moving Company, Rachel Bunting & the Humans, and Lyric Opera Company of Chicago. She has enjoyed teaching dance with various ages in Hilo, Honolulu, Durham, Winona, Chicago and Haifa, Israel. Beyond movement, Raina is nourished through gardening, woodworking, singing and spending loads of time with her beloved family.