Bilingual waiata wins national children's music award

Lucy (right)  is seen here with Itty Bitty Beats collaborator Jenny Payne.

A move to make te reo Māori more accessible to non-speaking whānau has landed Christchurch's Lucy Hiku a national music award.

Lucy, who's husband Clayton Hiku is from Ngāpuhi, is still celebrating taking out the top children's song at the recent Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards with her children's lullaby, Po Mārie.

Written as part of the Itty Bitty Beats collaboration with Jenny Payne, the waiata includes key Māori words.

Lucy says she wrote Pō Mārie for her three year old daughter Maia in an attempt to nourish te reo Māori in their home.

"Te Reo Māori is so important for all of us," she says. 

"I studied te reo Māori at University and it is such a beautiful language but often pākehā like myself find taking that first step to learn quite daunting, so hopefully this waiata may help others find a starting place," Lucy says.

Itty Bitty Beats also took out the award for Best Children's Album, Lay Your Head Down.  Pō Mārie can be heard on Bandcamp.

The Best Maori Album was awarded to Ranea for his album, Tihei Mauri Ora.