45 groups and thousands of supporters in New Zealand and around the globe look forward to the announcement of the Te Matatini Kapa Haka Festival draw tonight for 2015.
Rehua Marae in Christchurch will host the Te Matatini draw tonight at 7:30pm which will determine the order of performances for teams set to compete for the title of best performing Te Matatini Kapa Haka.
Next year’s event will be held in Christchurch hosted by the Waitaha Cultural Council and supported by Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and the Christchurch City Council.
The festival will be held from the 4th to the 8th of March which attracts the best teams from all over New Zealand and Australia who qualified for the National event through various regional competitions.
In a statement released by Te Matatini, Executive Director, Darrin Apanui, says the draw is “eagerly anticipated by the teams. The order of performances is determined through a ballot, and is undertaken in the presence of members of the host committee.”
Mr Apanui says the draw helps teams prepare and groups are always eager to find out who will be kicking off all performances.
“Being first to perform at our festival can be a nerve-wracking challenge for even the most experienced kapa haka performers,” Darrin says.
Over 20,000 people are expected to converge at Te Matatini in Christchurch for the semi-finals and finals.
Selwyn Parata, Chairman of Te Matatini says, “It has been a number of years since Te Matatini was last held in Te Waipounamu and we’re looking forward to playing our part in helping rebuild the cultural vibrancy of the city.”