It has been labelled as the comeback of the century for East Coast kapa haka, Hikurangi Pariha, who took the stage yesterday at the 2016 Karaitiana Tamararo Tai Rawhiti Senior Kapa Haka Regionals for the first time in over 50 years. Their stand was so amazing, that the judges confirmed their place to head away as one of five representatives of the East Coast at Te Matatini next year.
Making their presence felt after an absence of more than 50 years, many of them first time performers.
Ang Tibble -Hikurangi Pariha says, “According to our elders it's been a really long time since we've competed at Tamararo, since '65, that was the last time we stood on stage, so, yes, we are so proud and humbled.”
The performance has been a dream come true for composer Kuini Moehau Reedy.
Reedy - Ngāti Porou says, “It was a joint effort, it wasn't as if it was just me, all I did was hold the pen, but there was unity in thought and that is how the waiata were created.”
All the hard work and weeks of preparation has culminated into history in the making.
Selwyn Parata - Hikuranga Pariha says, “Our younger ones asked to get Pariha going again, to hold on to the kōrero of our sub-tribes Te Aitanga a Mate, Te Whānau o Te Rakairoa and Te Aowera as well as Ngāti Porou.
Hearing the news they'd come in at third place, cause for celebration as they now look ahead to Te Matatini.