Jon Shirota

Jon Shirota was born and raised on Maui, Hawaii. He is the author of two novels, Lucky Come Hawaii and Pineapple White. They were both adapted into plays and received awards. In addition to other grants and awards for playwriting, Jon, in 2005, was awarded a creative Artists Exchange Fellowship from the Japan/US Friendship Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Updated February 2008

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Discovering “Voices from Okinawa”

My father came to Hawaii from Okinawa in 1907 as an indentured laborer for a sugar plantation company. My mother followed in 1910 as a picture bride and then also became a laborer. When their children began going to school, they both learned to read and write Japanese and English.

They dreamed of one day returning home wealthy, but that day never came. The elusive pot of gold under the rainbow, neither kind nor cruel, was indifferent to them.

In 2005, nearly 100 years later, Jon Hiroshi, their sixth out of eight children, was awarded a Creative Artist Exchange Fellowship ...

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