Hula Preservation Society

Hawaiiana DVD (2020) A Film by Tom Vendetti featuring Auntie Nona Beamer

Hawaiiana is a new documentary by Maui-based filmmaker, Tom Vendetti, in which he explores the passion, grounding, leadership, and life journey of one of Hawaiʻi’s most beloved figures, Auntie Nona Beamer (1923-2008). He endeavored to have Auntie tell her own story by weaving historical footage from both the PBS Hawaii library and the Hula Preservation Society (HPS) Archive, with thoughtful narration by daughter-in-law, Moanalani Beamer. The viewer delightfully hears Auntie’s sweet, yet determined, voice as she talks story, laughs, educates, reflects, and inspires.

HPS was pleased to make the Nona Beamer Collection available to the filmmaker for research including footage from the last formal oral history session held with Auntie in 2007, on the island of Maui. In that interview, Auntie reflected on meeting His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, an experience which was deeply impactful.

The teachings of Buddhism captured the heart of Filmmaker Tom Vendetti many years earlier after he also met the Dalai Lama, motivating him to produce other award-winning films on the pursuit of peace and happiness in life. In Hawaiiana, Vendetti brings his global humanitarian vision to the screen through the life and teachings of a Hawaiian woman who readily and beautifully embodied aloha, Hawaiʻi’s treasured gift to the world.

Total Running Time: 57 minutes