The only full-time municipal band in the United States, the Royal Hawaiian Band have been performing a mixture of traditional Hawaiian music and new compositions since 1836. Formed by order of King Kamechameha III, under the direction of Henry Berger, the group is now an agency of the city and county of Honolulu. Much of the funding required to support the group continues to be raised by a non-profit organization, the Friends of the Royal Hawaiian Band. Hawaii-born Aaron David Mahi, the Royal Hawaiian Band's seventeenth bandmaster, has held the post since 1981. A graduate of the Kamehameha School in Honolulu, Mahi earned a degree in music education from the Hartt College in Connecticut. In addition to leading the Royal Hawaiian Band, Mahi has performed and conducted the Hawaiian Symphony Orchestra and the Windward Symphony. The Royal Hawaiian Band's concert at New York's Carnegie Hall on July 16, 1988 was recorded and released as a two volume set, Live at Carnegie Hall.
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