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Carla's Korero - 05/02/12

1 years ago

E nga iwi o te motu, tēnā koutou katoa


Nei rā nga mihi me nga pānui a Te Ahurei Toi o Tāmaki Makaurau. Many greetings to you all from the Auckland Arts Festival as we approach an important day, Waitangi Day. The day when some of Te Iwi Māori signed a partnership with the Crown, known as the Treaty of Waitangi.


"On 6 February 1840, the Treaty of Waitangi was signed at Waitangi in the Bay of Islands by Hobson, several English residents, and approximately 45 Māori rangatira, Hone Heke being the first. The Māori text of the Treaty was then taken around Northland to obtain additional Māori signatures and copies were sent around the rest of the country for signing, but the English text was signed only at Waikato Heads and at Manukau by 39 rangatira. By the end of that year, over 500 Māori had signed the Treaty. Of those 500, 13 were women."


"If we are to share a nation together, and build a future together: Then New Zealanders must also embrace our shared History…" Māori Affairs Minister, Dr Pita Sharples.

One way for us all to understand and learn more about ourselves and our nation today is to look at what is happening in the arts. A play or a painting can tell us of our past and our future.


This year Auckland Arts Festival has a lot of home-grown work and on this day I want to concentrate on work by some of the Māori artists from around the motu, working in both traditional and contemporary arts, who feature in the 2013 programme.


Areare mai tō taringa! Open your ears to Everything is Ka Pai, a night of homegrown music and entertainment. Come down to the cabaret in the Town Hall with your whānau and friends, order a drink and listen to songs we all know and love. From Blue Smoke to Haere Mai, Everything is Ka Pai, many great old songs are all performed with a contemporary twist by some of New Zealand's hottest musicians including The Yoots (founded by members of Fat Freddy's Drop), who will be the house band for the evening, the fabulous Maisey Rika, Ria Hall, Annie and Will Crummer, Hinewehi Mohi, the Modern Māori Quartet and the legendary John Rowles. They will be supported by Te Waka Huia, St Joseph's Māori Girls' Choir and the Auckland division of the Ratana Brass Band. An extra special inclusion is 10 Good "Wah's", a re-working of the much loved Ten Guitars by Anika Moa and performed with nine of the top female musicians in the country. Hosted by Pio Terei and Waimihi Hōtere, Everything is Ka Pai will be an evening full of laughter, sing-alongs and great music. Book your table now.


George Nepia? Husband, father, farmer, singer, rebel and of course … an Invincible. Leading Māori playwright Hone Kouka's award winning play I, George Nepia, directed by Jason Te Kare, celebrates the life of a talented young man from Nuhaka who is thrust into global rugby stardom. This beautiful eloquent work is a journey that celebrates the spirit of our nation. Actor Jarod Rawiri is mesmerising as George Nepia, providing a peek into the heart, mind and life of an extraordinary man and sporting legend.

Tā Moko, the traditional Māori art of drawing on skin, is a meaningful way to bind, maintain and embrace the history of your family. Today, moko is more popular than ever, as is Samoan tatau, which many young New Zealanders decide to do when they are mentally and spiritually ready. Arts Foundation Laureate, and Trustee, Derek Lardelli, one of our country's finest artists and a respected kapa haka practitioner (also composer of haka for the All Blacks), will set up a live gallery experience for three days in the Aotea Centre. You can see moko being created, and ask questions about the kawa or protocols of how it is done and what it means.


A completely contemporary work, Hui, is set in an urban city environment today. In Hui, four brothers return home to mourn the death of their father. They haven't seen each other in 20 years. They never got on and still don't. The brothers have changed completely since they last met and what happens on this is stormy night is devastating. Written by Mitch Tawhi Thomas and directed by 2012 New Zealand Arts Foundation Laureate Rachel House, this Festival commission relates with clarity a story about whānau, secrets, lies and the challenge of defying Māori tradition. It, too, tells an important story of national significance.


Don't miss in Aotea Square - on Saturday 16 March, as art of White Night, a mass poi event in Aotea Square curated by Te Manu Huia's Kura Te Ua and drawing from kapa haka performers from around Auckland in a celebration of light and rhythm, taking place at 11pm. Then on Family Day, 24 March, all are welcome to be part of the Festival's "Boy E" flash mob, based on the brilliant "Thriller Haka" from the movie Boy. To learn the moves, visit our YouTube channel.


There's lots more home-grown work, and I will tell you more about it over the next few weeks.

Support our own artists as they tell our stories - stories that embrace our history and help us work for our combined future.


Ngā mihi mahana Carla