Web series encourages non-speakers to embrace Te Reo Māori

By Te Kāea

It's about moving a non-speaker and becoming more active in Te Reo Māori. That's the drive behind web-series Hahana who are working towards making te reo Māori sexy and enticing for the younger generation.

An online video, “5 Keys to Being Māori” is proving popular on social media with over 223, 000 views.

Made by producers of the web series Hahana who wanted to make the Māori language and customs enticing to young Māori in their region of Manawatū, Whanganui and Horowhenua, who know little about either.

Ash Patea of Hahana says, “The purpose of 5 Keys to Being Māori, is to show an important aspect through humour and comedy, to make it easier for them to want to learn and retain the language.”

It's the 11th of 30 web-series which is funded by Te Māngai Pāho, for its innovation.

Larry Parr of Te Māngai Pāho says, “It's comedy that engages, like the late Billy T James did.  To me his comedy is timeles that still brings a laugh.”

It encapsulates reo Māori exponents Poia Rewi and Rawinia Higgins idea about "Rightshifting" to move persons knowledge of Māori from Zero or Passive to Active.

Rawinia Higgins says, “We need to look at how we can create pathways to support and nurture people to learn the Māori language.  And not think you need to be fluent or an expert in one day.”

Hahana is now in the process of producing a TV series based on the web-series that will broadcast on Māori Television.