Maui Arts & Entertainment

Plaque Honoring Promoter Tom Moffatt Installed at Waikīkī Shell

June 5, 2021, 4:46 PM HST
* Updated June 4, 9:13 AM
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Courtesy photo: City and County of Honolulu.

A plaque honoring legendary concert promoter and entrepreneur, Tom Moffatt, was dedicated during a ceremony hosted by Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi. Moffatt passed away in 2016 after a six-decade career promoting events in the islands.

“I was privileged to be able to call Tom Moffatt my friend. He was larger than life and had an incredible generosity of spirit which helped make him a one-of-a kind radio personality and promoter,” said Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi in a press release. “His passion, talent and dedication to bringing in awe-inspiring world class performances to Honolulu has set a standard for live events in Hawai‘i and created special and long-lasting memories for generations of our residents.”

“Tom was a devoted partner for what would have been 60 years this May. He was full of passion—for his work, for his family, for the people of Hawai‘i,” said Sweetie Moffatt. “From the moment he arrived here from the Midwest, he embraced the Island culture and was fully grounded and very clear on what he could do for Hawai‘i. Tom’s affinity for the Islands reflected a deep respect for Hawai‘i’s roots. At the same time, he recognized the musical pathways that would more deeply connect the 50th State to the rest of the nation. He will always be the love of my life.”

Tom Moffatt became a household name in Hawai‘i when he brought Elvis Presley to perform for thousands of fans in 1957. Since then, he booked dozens of high-profile acts, including Frank Sinatra, the Rolling Stones, Jimmy Hendrix, Elton John, Michael Jackson and Bruno Mars.

In 2002, Moffatt earned the Nā Hōkū Hanohano lifetime achievement award and was named by Honolulu Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in Honolulu. He was nominated to the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2009.

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The plaque is located at a spot between main gate and Shell stage that Moffatt was frequently seen during shows as he took in the technical aspects of the production, perused the crowd and enjoyed the music. It states, “Mahalo nui loa for bringing so much joy to the people of Hawai‘i for over half a century. The consummate showman, your productions featuring iconic artists who enthralled audiences from around the world. In deep gratitude for your priceless gifts to the citizens of Honolulu, the City and County of Honolulu dedicates the “Tom Moffatt Waikiki Shell” in your loving memory.”

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The City and County of Honolulu proclaimed April 12, 2014 to be “Tom Moffatt Day” in honor of the 50 year anniversary of his first show at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center. On Aug. 17, 2017, the City Council adopted Resolution 17-229, renaming the Waikīkī Shell the “Tom Moffatt Waikīkī Shell.”

The Tom Moffatt Waikīkī Shell has recently reopened to live events in compliance with Tier 3 of Honolulu’s COVID-19 Recovery Framework. The Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra has scheduled performances on weekends through August 2021.

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