Topic: Indigenous

Tereora College from Rarotonga en-route to Polyfest

By Te Kāea

For the first time, a Cook Island high school has been invited to perform at the ASB Polyfest.Tereora High School from Rarotonga will take to the stage as special guests at the festival starting on Wednesday.

A special cross-cultural exchange is about to take place.

Teremoana College student and cultural performer Vaeruarangi Papera says, “Man I hope they really learn something from us we want to teach them something from the Cook Islands.”

Ambushia Mateariki says, “The items we'll do at the polyfest is what we do at the constitution which is the Pe'e, imene tuki, ute, action song and drum dance.”

Principal of Tereora High School Tania Morgan says they're excited for the opportunity.

“Naturally we're pumped, we're geared up and we really are proud of our students, proud of our whole learning community that we've been able to get this far.”

The Tereora College cultural group who will be making their way NZ performed to mark the opening of a new educational building for the college.

Tania Morgan says, "The design of it (the College) actually came from two former students of Tereora College and they have just finished university in New Zealand (so they have been taught here, educated here in the Cook Islands, went off to university, came back and designed it so we're very proud of that fact."

Morgan says the building will open up new educational opportunities for the students.

When asked if they would have liked to compete at Polyfest, the students had some interesting responses.

Vaeruarangi Papera says, “Maybe a little bit but we don't mind.”

Ambushia Mateariki says, “As New Zealanders, they won't expect us to perform there.”

“Or compete against them so maybe next time,” adds Papera.

He explains, “It's really important, we're pretty much excited to come show our culture on that side just can't wait.”

Tereora College takes the Polyfest stage on March 16.