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Completed in: 2020 | 60 min.

Section: Pacific Showcase





Missed the Conversation? Watch the discussion HERE via the HIFF Facebook Page. 

HIFF40 and Pacific Islanders in Communications (PIC) is honored to present the annual PIC Trailblazer Award to singer and actress Keala Settle. In this one hour conversation, we will discuss Settle's humble beginnings growing up on the North Shore of Oahu and her trajectory in becoming an accomplished stage actor on Broadway. We will also discuss her eventual segue to the big screen with her Earth-shattering performance in THE GREATEST SHOWMAN, which would lead her to perform the Academy Award nominated song "This Is Me" to millions of viewers on Oscar night in 2018. 

Keala Settle made her Broadway debut in 2011 in PRISCILLA, QUEEN OF THE  DESERT as ‘Shirley’ and in the ensemble. She originated the role of ‘Norma  Valverde’ in HANDS ON A HARDBODY, which ran on Broadway in 2013, and was nominated for the Outer Critics Circle Award, Drama Desk Award, and  Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. Settle played the role of  ‘Madame Thenardier’ in the revival of LES MISÉRABLES, starting in March  2014, and ending on March 1, 2015. Settle originated the role of ‘Becky’ in  the musical WAITRESS, which opened on Broadway on April 24, 2016, at the  Brooks Atkinson Theatre after premiering at the American Repertory  Theater in August 2015. Settle also played the role of ‘Tracy Turnblad’ in  the national tour of HAIRSPRAY. 

In 2017, Settle portrayed the “Bearded Woman” ‘Lettie Lutz’ in the musical  drama THE GREATEST SHOWMAN, alongside Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, and  Zendaya. The song "This Is Me" from the film, won the 2018 Golden Globe  Award for Best Original Song, and was nominated for the Academy Award  for Best Original Song. She can be seen next in the Universal Pictures feature ALL MY LIFE directed by Marc Meyers. 

Settle was born in Laie on the North Shore of Oahu. the eldest of five children, of Susanne (née Riwai), who is of Māori (Rangitāne, Ngāti Kahungunu) descent from New Zealand, and British-born David Settle, she is a graduate of Kahuku High School (class of 1993), and an alumna of Southern Utah University. 

Presented by Pacific Islanders in Communications, this award is given to a cinema artist of Pacific Islander heritage who broadens the scope of Pacific Islander stories onto the world stage, producing award winning work in independent and global cinema, becoming a trendsetter in their field and a cultural ambassador that shines a spotlight on Pacific islander culture in mainstream media. The honoree is a true trailblazer, whose work aligns to support, advance, and develop Pacific Island media content and talent that results in a deeper understanding of Pacific Island history, culture, and contemporary challenges. Past recipients include Taika Waititi, Heperi Mit and Stan Grant. We are honored to present the 2020 Trailblazer Award to Hawai‘i's own, Keala Settle.  

Online Access

Nov 10th 2:00 PM - Nov 29th 11:00 PM GET ONLINE ACCESS Get Tickets

Film Available

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Cast & Crew

Panelist Leanne Ferrer, Keala Settle
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