Ngā Manu a Tāne, the last of the host groups to take the stage at Te Matatini 2015, are excited to have the festival return to Christchurch after nearly 30 years.
Tutored by Hōhepa Waitoa and Pūmau Tana, Ngā Manu a Tāne was established in 2006 with the aim to reach excellence in te reo through Māori performing arts.
Their key aims and aspirations are that the birds of the forest can be heard again, speaking and singing in their mother tongue.
Hohepa Waitoa told Te Kāea, “In 2004, that's when we started to discuss where our student who have finished school go. So Ngā Manu a Tāne was born for those who wanted to keep afoot in the realm of Rehia.”
Merita Waitoa-Paku said, “This is our third Te Matatini so we are still newbies to this level of competition Te Matatini. Even though we have performed for different groups we are still all learning. But learning what we need to know, we need to have a strong performance no matter what, we must be great and show our greatness to the whole country.”
She says, “It's our time to give back to the nation, so you will hear in our items our call to everyone "Welcome, come to us in Christchurch to this beautiful land" and that's our main focus at Te Matatini, show our respect to the country, and to give them a warm welcome to Christchurch.”
Here's the interview with Ngā Manu a Tane during their preparations for Te Matatini 2015:
Here's a snippet of their performance at last year's Waitaha Senior Kapa Haka Competition: