Māori culture challenges at Te Matatini
27 Jan 2009
Māori culture teams from all over New Zealand are polishing their kapa haka - performance arts - as they ready themselves to compete at the country’s biggest Māori culture event next month (February 2009).
Known as ‘Te Matatini’ - meaning ‘the many faces’ - the national kapa haka championship brings together the cream of Māori performing arts teams to compete for the coveted national title.
Te Matatini 2009 - to be held at Baypark Stadium in Tauranga, in the Bay of Plenty, from 19 - 22 February - has attracted 36 teams.
While most competitors represent 13 regions throughout New Zealand, the 2009 festival has for the first time attracted entries from across the Tasman Sea. For the two Australian-based teams, Te Matatini provides an opportunity for ex-pat Māori performers to be fully immersed in their home culture.
As the prime showcase for Māori performing arts, Te Matatini attracts widespread international interest. Media from around the world will use the opportunity to capture the visual impact of kapa haka and meet key team members. More than 20,000 tickets have been pre-sold.
Kapa haka represents all the skills and intricacies of Māori performing arts - dance, drama, storytelling, poetry, movement, coordination, laments to mourn and remember, and songs to inspire and entertain.
Teams combine all of this into a polished 25-minute performance and must perfect every discipline including whakaeke (a choreographed entry), moteatea (traditional chant), poi, waiata-ā-ringa (action song), haka and whakawatea (exit).
Te Matatini - the many faces of Māori culture
Kapa haka - the Māori performing arts story
Kapa haka - traditional performance art of the Māori
These topics may also be of interest to you