Having recently retired as bandmaster of the Royal Hawaiian Band, Michael Nakasone has closed the door to one chapter of his life while whole-heart-edly embracing another. He served as bandmaster for the past five years and is proud to have left his position on a high note.
“I feel wonderful knowing that we have reached a vast new audience through the expansion of our performance schedule at diverse venues including Hawaiian monarchical and cultural events, schools, community events, retirement homes, hospitals, festivals, parades and official government events,” says Nakasone, who also served as conductor of the Hawaii Youth Symphony from 1989 to 2010 and as a band director for the Kamehameha High School Performing Arts Program over several summers.
“I am very pleased that we have secured our budget for the new fiscal year for the continuation of the Royal Hawaiian Band,” he adds, noting that the budget allows the band to maintain its full complement of 41 members, in addition to replacing an equipment truck. “I feel that the Royal Hawaiian Band is in an excellent position to serve our community well into the future.”
Nakasone appeared on MidWeek‘s cover in February 2006 and has since worked with an incredible number of musicians, singers and dancers as well as the community to carry out the mission of the Royal Hawaiian Band: “To promote and foster music, both historic and current, to preserve the Hawaiian musical culture, inspire young musicians and ultimately enrich the lives of the people of Hawaii.”
Now, at 65, Nakasone plans to spend a lot of time with his mother, who will celebrate her 90th birthday later this year, as well as catching up with his grandsons Rylan (7) and Brody (3).
“Music and education are my passions, so I plan to volunteer my help to improve music education in our schools and hope to work with many different musical organizations,” he says. “Of course, I will continue to be a strong advocate and supporter of the Royal Hawaiian Band.
“Being bandmaster has truly been a blessing. Conducting these talented performers who bring the unique music of Hawaii to life for the people of Hawaii and its visitors from throughout the world has been a wonderful and remarkable experience.”
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