The journey begins for the new Te Matatini archway that will stand and represent the many facets of Te Matatini.
Te Arawa representative Mauriora Kingi says ‘following Te Matatini the archway will be used at all future festivals.”
The archway has taken four months to complete with a team of 20 carvers. The images are based around the origins of carving linking all Māori and the Pacific.
This has been hailed as a milestone event for all involved and is one filled with mixed emotions.
According to one of the carvers Karl Johnstone they are hoping to have the archway installed in three days and engineers are on the scene to help achieve this and following this the stage will be built around it. He is hopeful that no unforeseeable problems will arise.
The relationship between Te Matatini and Te Puia began in 2009. After this, the real work begins as we count down to Te Matatini. CEO Darrin Apanui says they are hoping to cope with a capacity crowd of 25,000 people.
With only two weeks to go Te Matatini will kick off in Rotorua where the best of the best in the world of Kapa Haka will compete for the title.