Jake Shimabukuro set to return to the Colonial Theatre

Ukulele virtuoso scheduled to make return Saturday at 8 p.m.

  • Jake Shimabukuro Courtesy Photo—

Wednesday, October 31, 2018 11:51PM

On Saturday, at 8 p.m., The Colonial Theatre will welcome back to the stage ukulele virtuoso Jake Shimabukuro.

Attendees will not only be amazed by Shimabukuro’s performance, but also by the story of his success. He remembers that when he picked up the ukulele at age four, he knew this instrument was meant to be his future. What he could not know was that, in that future, he would go on to play for millions, including Queen Elizabeth II.

Taught to play the ukulele by his mother, Carol Shimabukuro, in Hawaii, Shimabukuro also learned to play the drums, guitar and piano. Even so, the ukulele would always remain number one in his heart. “None of those instruments spoke to me like the ukulele did,” Shimabukuro says. “There was something different about the uke.”

With a passion for music, Shimabukuro was able to learn from musicians, dancers, singers and even athletes, including Bruce Lee and Michael Jordan. He became an international phenomenon by 2005, thanks to a YouTube video of him playing “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” written by Beatles guitarist George Harrison.

“The ukulele, with its humble four strings and modest two-octave range, is an instrument limited only by the imagination and creativity of the person playing it,” says Shimabukuro.

In his ongoing experimentation with the uke, Shimabukuro not only plays his original compositions, but also fan favorites such as Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Schubert’s “Ave Maria,” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” His latest CD, Nashville Sessions, blends elements of jazz artistry with heartfelt melodicism.

Ticket prices range from $30 to $44 and can be purchased online at The Colonial Theatre’s website, TheColonial.org, or through the box office at 352-2033.