PBS HAWAIʻI PRESENTS
The Films of Eddie & Myrna Kamae, From the Heart
- Liʻa: The Legacy of a Hawaiian Man
- The History of the Sons of Hawaii
- Lahaina: Waves of Change
- Kī Hōʻalu: Slack Key, The Hawaiian Way
- Luther Kahekili Makekau: A One Kine Hawaiian Man
- Listen to the Forest
- Hawaiian Voices: Bridging Past to Present
- Words, Earth & Aloha: The Source of Hawaiian Music
- Keepers of the Flame: The Cultural Legacy of Three Hawaiian Women
- Those Who Came Before: The Musical Journey of Eddie Kamae
The Films of Eddie and Myrna Kamae are 10 award-winning documentaries released between 1988 and 2009. Eddie Kamae, who passed away in 2017, was well known for his contributions to Hawaiian music. With his wife Myrna, he made these films to perpetuate Hawai‘i’s cultural heritage for future generations.
Liʻa: The Legacy of a Hawaiian Man
Thursday, June 4 at 9:00 pm
This documentary celebrates the music and spirit of Big Island performer and composer, Sam Li‘a Kalainaina (1881-1975). It is also about a place, Waipi‘o Valley, and a life shaped and nourished by that place. This film’s world premiere opened the 1988 Hawai‘i International Film Festival.
The History of the Sons of Hawaii
Thursday, June 11 at 9:00 pm
This documentary tells the story of the charismatic band that helped launch the Hawaiian cultural renaissance. Spanning 40 years of Hawai‘i’s rich musical tradition, the film offers an intimate look at a unique group of performers and composers: their songs, their humor and their devotion to a sound that continues to convey something essential about the Hawaiian spirit.
Lahaina: Waves of Change
Thursday, June 18 at 9:00 pm
In 1999, Eddie Kamae visited Lahaina, only to find that Pioneer Mill, the center of Lahaina’s sugar industry, was closing down. It was the end of an era – a simpler, more innocent time that Eddie remembers from visiting his grandmother during childhood summers in Lahaina. Eddie leads us through many of the changes Lahaina has undergone, both historical and personal. And despite all of the radical changes and tumultuous times Lahaina has experienced, it remains a sacred Hawaiian place, not because of what has been built upon it, but because of what is in the hearts of people who live there.
Kī Hōʻalu: Slack Key, The Hawaiian Way
Thursday, June 25 at 9:00 pm
Kī hō‘alu (slack key) is the Hawaiian way of making music. Performers and composers reveal how this unique style of playing conveys something essential about the Hawaiian spirit and the Hawaiian family tradition.
Luther Kahekili Makekau: A One Kine Hawaiian Man
Thursday, July 2 at 9:00 pm
This documentary pays tribute to the untamed spirit of a colorful and controversial Hawaiian man. Known throughout the islands, Luther Makekau was part philosopher and part outlaw, a chanter and a singer, a fighter, a lover, a cattle rustler, a rebel and a poet. Born on Maui in 1890, during the reign of King Kalākaua, he lived nearly 100 years, shaped by a century of turbulent cultural change.
Listen to the Forest
Thursday, July 9 at 9:00 pm
This environmental documentary speaks of the widespread concern for rainforest preservation, while reminding us of traditional Hawaiian values. Interviews, chants, and original songs and dances give voice to an older form of ecological wisdom summed up in the phrase “mālama ‘āina,” to take care of the land.
Hawaiian Voices: Bridging Past to Present
Thursday, July 16 at 9:00 pm
This documentary honors the role of kūpuna (elders) in preserving Hawaiian culture. It focuses on the legacies of three respected Hawaiian elders whose lives bridged the transition from older times into the late 20th century. They are Ruth Makaila Kaholoa‘a, age 93, of the Big Island; Lilia Wahinemaika‘i Hale, age 85, of O‘ahu and Molokai; and Reverend David “Kawika” Ka‘alakea, age 78, of Maui. Each is a living archive of invaluable lore and recollection, a treasure whose stories, memories and perspectives need to be shared as a way of bringing the healing wisdom of the past into the often fragmented world of the present.
Words, Earth & Aloha: The Source of Hawaiian Music
In Hawai‘i, music has always been much more than a form of entertainment. Through the centuries, it has been a primary means of cultural continuity. This documentary pays tribute to a wide range of composers who flourished between the 1870s and the 1920s, and for whom Hawaiian was still a first language. The film explores the poetry and play of Hawaiian lyrics, as well as the places and features of the natural world that inspired songs still loved and listened to today.
Keepers of the Flame: The Cultural Legacy of Three Hawaiian Women
Thursday, July 30 at 9:00 pm
This documentary chronicles the lives of three Hawaiian women who helped to save the Hawaiian culture, which was in serious peril. The combined artistry and aloha of Mary Kawena Pukui, ‘Iolani Luahine and Edith Kanaka‘ole “helped to revive the flame of traditional Hawaiian culture – a flame that had almost died,” says Eddie Kamae in his on-camera introduction to the film.
Those Who Came Before: The Musical Journey of Eddie Kamae
Thursday, August 6 at 9:00 pm
The Kamae’s final documentary pays tribute to the music of Hawaiians, whose gifts of knowledge helped guide Eddie Kamae. His pursuits led him to some of the most respected gate-keepers of the Hawaiian Renaissance: the author and translator Mary Kawena Pukui, the “Songwriter of Waipi‘o” Sam Li‘a, “Aloha Chant” author Pilahi Paki, and Hawaiian cultural resource Lilia “Mama” Hale. One by one, they entrusted him with key pieces of Hawai‘i’s musical heritage – inspiring him to understand, perform, and pass on to the children of Hawai‘i.