Royal Hawaiian Band at Iolani Palace
The Royal Hawaiian Band was founded in 1836 by King Kamehameha III, and is the only band in the United States with a royal legacy. The band’s mission is to promote and foster music, both current and historic, to preserve the Hawaiian musical culture, inspire young musicians and ultimately enrich the lives of the people and visitors of Hawaii.
The Royal Hawaiian Band serves as the official band of the City and County of Honolulu and has the distinction of being the only full-time municipal band in the nation and the only band in the United States of America established by a royal kingdom. The Band represents the City and County of Honolulu at public events and provides a wide variety of music for the educational and cultural needs of the community. Due to its cultural heritage, the Band endeavors to maintain its observance of and its participation in all events that were established during the Hawaiian monarchy era.
The Royal Hawaiian Band is made up of 40 full-time positions and functions as a concert band, a marching band and a glee club ensemble. The administrative and operational affairs of the band are handled by the bandmaster, assistant administrator, brass supervisor, woodwind supervisor, glee club leader, assistant conductor, drum major, librarian-in-charge, assistant librarian, field coordinator and senior clerk-typist. With the exceptions of the bandmaster and the senior clerk–typist the other positions listed are dual positions, they are musicians in the band in addition to their administrative and staff responsibilities
Weekly concerts are on-going on the lawn at the Iolani Palace on Fridays, and at the Queen Kapiolani Park bandstand on Sundays. Regular performances were scheduled at the Windward Mall, Ala Moana Shopping Center, Mililani Town Center, Pearlridge Shopping Center, and Kahala Mall. The band also performed public concerts at the Royal Grove of the Royal Hawaiian Center.
Hawaiian cultural and monarchial events featured the band at the Queen Lili`uokalani birthday commemoration, Queen Emma’s memorial tribute, King Kalakaua’s birthday celebration, the Prince Kuhio Parade, the colorful Aloha Festivals Floral Parade, and the regal King Kamehameha Floral Parade.
The band performed for other cultural and community events including the Honolulu City Lights Parade, the Kapolei City Lights Parade, the Matsuri Parade, the Martin Luther King Jr. Parade, the Pan Pacific Parade, the Night in Chinatown Parade and numerous other commu-nity parades. Community concerts were performed at the Waialua Bandstand, I Love Liliha Festival, Kalihi Sunset in the Park, Waimanalo Country Fair, Korean Festival, Okinawan Festival, Samoan Festival, Vietnamese Festival, Filipino Fiesta and a Bastille Day performance. The band also performed for the City’s Parks and Recreation Department’s annual May Day celebration featuring entertainment and a magnificent floral display. Other popular regular venues for the Band’s programs were the numerous retire-ment and care facilities around the island. The audiences always looked forward to and enjoyed the Hawaiian and contemporary music by the Royal Hawaiian Band.
From the sounding of the pu (conch shell) and the opening oli (chant) to the musical, vocal and hula styling of its talented members, the Royal Hawaiian Band continues to promote and perpetuate the music of Hawaii, and provide a unique musical experience