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Kapa Haka Groups Whakapap Clarified

27 January 2005

Kapa Haka Groups Whakapap Clarified

As proud sponsors of Te Tini o Tanerore, Kina Film Productions Ltd would just like to clarify the 'whakapapa' of this Kapa Haka Roopu. Te Tini o Tanerore did compete in the Te Arawa Regional Kapa Haka Competition as Mr Grant well knows.

They were selected as regional finalists under the name Te Wananga o Aotearoa Te Arawa, a name that not only reflected where the performers came from but also the then sponsoring organisation.

In the 10 years this group has competed in Te Arawa Regionals, they have NEVER been recognised by iwi of this rohe, as a roopu that represents Te Arawatanga. I therefore fail to understand what the 'direct challenge' they now pose.

At the end of the day, get it right. National Kapa Haka Competitions are no different to any other competitive sport. Groups perform for the much coveted awards, trophies and national recognition as Aotearoa's 'top kapa haka roopu'. When finalists are selected from Regionals for Nationals, it is because they were the best at their 'craft' on that day. Mr Grant well knows this and his remarks empitomise bad sportsmanship and are egotistical to say the least! They add to other 'bullying tactics' presently being inflicted on the Rakuraku whanau, which sadly has included the withdrawal of their long standing sponsors, TWOA Te Arawa.

I admire the stance and mana of the members of Te Tini o Tanerore, who attended all meetings related to 'unresolved issues' listening carefully to both sides and reserving their final decision until these discussions were completed. I also admire the stance of those other kapa haka roopu that represent the tribal mana of their iwi and have thus decided to withdraw. Each party has made their decision based upon their 'world view perspective' on what National Kapa Haka Competitions mean to them.

It is now time to get on with it. Te Tini o Tanerore goes into Nationals as an 'under-dog' working really hard to give their young members an opportunity to perform with 'the best of the best'. For many, this will be a rare and beneficial experience. They are not 'iwi-less', they are Maori, descendants of amazing tipuna who gave value to both performance and competitiveness.


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