Twenty six official judges have been appointed by the National Te Matatini Committee to judge at the biennial Te Matatini Festival being held at Hagley Park, Christchurch in March 2015.
In a media statement released today, Te Matatini chairman Selwyn Parata said, "the judges will adjudicate 45 of the best kapa haka in Aotearoa and Australia to determine who will be the champion of champions."
55 nominations were received in total from the 13 regions who participated in the preliminary rounds this year.
Mr Parata confirmed that while 26 judges were selected for the festival that all nominations were of a high calibre.
The judges for the following sections have been revealed - Waiata Tira, Whakaeke, Mōteatea, Waiata ā-ringa, Poi, Haka, Whakawātea. Last year, it was mandated that Te Reo would become an aggregate section, and that each aggregate judge would also provide a mark for Te Reo. Here's Amomai Pihama's report on Te Reo becoming an aggregate section.
Also, here is the link to the official Te Matatini Rules Book, search for 4.4.3 for more details on the ruling.
In the Aggregate sections:
Whakaeke - Haani Huata, Tui Ransfield, Hemi Tai Tin, Pouroto Ngaropo
Mōteatea - Georgina Kerekere, Turuhira Hare, Mauriora Kingi, Ruka Broughton
Poi - Huia Julie Hahunga, Leanne Morehu, Ngamoni Huata, Te Atarangi Whiu
Waiata ā-ringa - Hema Temara, Kuini Moeahu Reedy, Leon Blake, Puka Moeau
Haka - Joe Harawira, Maihe Nikora, Mark Kopua, Muriwai Ihakara
Whakawātea - Pania Papa, Tihi Puanaki, Chris Winitana, Watson Ohia
In the Non- Aggregate sections:
Kaitātahi Wāhine - Hema Temara, Kuini Moehau Reedy, Tihi Puanaki, Turuhira Hare
Kaitātaki Tāne - Hemi Tai Tin, Joe Harawira, Mauriora Kingi, Muriwai Ihakara
Kākahu - Te Rangi Hemi, Tui Ransfield, Mark Kopua, Tei Nohotima
Waiata Tira - Leanne Morehu, Te Rangi Hemi, Leon Blake, Watson Ohia
The four-day event to be held between March 4-8 will be hosted by Waitaha Cultural Council with support from Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Christchurch City Council.
Tickets for the festival are currently on sale at www.tematatini.co.nz