Hawaiian Music Collection - Farden Sisters: Group Biography

The Farden sisters include Irmgard (Irmgard Farden Aluli, 1911-2001), Emma, Edna, Margaret, Diana, and Annette. They were born in the early 1900s and raised on the western coast of Maui. The children learned music through their parent's love of music and as a way to enjoy family time together, becoming Hawaii's foremost family in singers, dancers and composers. Only two of the sisters, Edna and Margaret, ever had formal musical training. Annette (Annie) was known for being the clown and won the Hawaiian Music Foundation's 1977 Aloha award for outstanding contribution to the development of Hawaiian music. Irmgard remembers visiting with Queen Liliuokalani as a girl and was a prolific song writer, writing over three hundred songs. Emma continued to perform on Maui throughout much of her life. Diana didn't perform as much as her other sisters although she and Irmgard were members of the Annie Kerr Trio in the twenties. Diana was honored by the Hawaiian Academy of Recording Arts with a lifetime achievement award in 1991. The sisters performed together and separately in various groups throughout their lives but are known for their group called the Farden Sisters that performed in the 1950s. Their favorite song was Puamana, a song that spoke of their childhood home, the love they felt there and dancing in the moonlight under the shadow of the eleven palm trees planted for each child of the Farden family.

Honolulu Advertiser 3/13/90 and 12/31/93, New York Times 10/31/01, and Honolulu Star-Bulletin 10/31/00.