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Do It Like a Wahine: Cambodian Dancer, Virginia Prak

In Hawaiian, the word Wahine means woman.The Do it like a Wahine blog was inspired by women, for women. In this section, we give women a platform to share their stories and artistry.

By fostering stories, we gain respect and understanding of where people come from, which expands our thinking and insights in our own perspectives. Our mission is to highlight women from all around the world to support their journey, empower others and honor them with exquisite island jewelry.

Virginia, a 28 year old Cambodian dancer whose passion for dance and her Cambodian community has blossomed over the past 20 years. She is a strong advocate of finding your self identity, and is a firm believer in manifesting anything you want. Read on to find out more about this amazing wahine!

a woman in pink posing in Cambodian dance

How did you get introduced to dancing?

Virginia: “I was introduced to Cambodian dance when I was about 8 years old in Lowell, Massachusetts where I was born and raised. In the beginning, I started dancing because my neighbor was the owner of a dance troupe and he had a daughter who was around my age, and we would always play together. I would just go to dance practice with them, and as I got older I kept doing it and then I found a love for Cambodian dance. I just continued it as I was able to have so many opportunities training in Cambodia and would also perform worldwide with the dance troupe.”

What has dancing taught you?

Virginia: “Dancing really helped me find my self-identity, and just ended up being a safe space for me. It’s special and it’s a part of my identity and where my family came from, and i just want to be that role model for other Cambodian Americans”

What was the best experience you've had from dancing?

Virginia: “The best experience I would say is when I teach workshops to students, especially children and go to the schools to share my culture with them, they really get inspired and intrigued and it’s like I bring a part of the world to them, versus having them go to another place.

What are some of the places you’ve traveled to for your performances?

Virginia: “I've traveled a lot personally, but performance wise, I was able to perform in The Philippines, Cambodia, France and nationwide in America.”

You are now an official resident of the Hawaiian islands, what brought you to Hawaii?

Virginia: “Obviously the beautiful scenery and all of nature, but mostly because of the lifestyle, and the people on the island. I also really liked how (Hawaiians) locals are really in touch with their culture, and their identity and they’re so proud and loud about it.”

What are your hobbies? What do you like to do in your spare time?

Virginia: ”In my spare time I like to go to the beach, read, dance and travel. Just do new things, and get out of the box.”

What’s one thing you would like people to know about you?

Virginia: ”I'd say that I'm an open person, open to listening to others and everybody's opinions, I think that’s the libra in me. I think I'm a very peaceful person overall.”

Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

Virginia: ”One of the queens from Cambodia, her name is Queen Indradevi. I never really found out about her until recently, because I felt like I resonated with her and what she was doing. She was very intelligent and led a lot of the cultural stuff for the country and was just an advocate for her culture and for children and for helping others.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Virginia: ”You can do anything you want just manifest it, and put your mind to it.”

What is your favorite jewelry from Island By Koa Nani?

Virginia: “My favorite piece is the Larimar Nouveau Bangle. I love the Larimar collection because of the metaphysical properties of the stones. This bangle is a simple representation with a modern and elegant design that is perfect to wear for any occasion.”

Get to know Virginia more @virginiaprak.


Jessie Moitozo

What a beautiful read

Tonya Ulmer

Virginia, you have taught me how to be confident in dancing, you are my inspiration! So I’m going to dance like a Wahine, thanks to you.
My favorite jewelry ice is the #Lariman Nouveau Bangle, It is absolutely stunning
Thank you

Laurie Emerson

I love that you teach to inspire children. It lets them realize that they can do anything.

Veronica Garrett

It is very inspiring.

Amanda P.

Very interesting to read.

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