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Queer Life Maori Style Returns To Maori Television


MONDAY MAY 22 2006

Queer Life Maori Style Returns To Maori Television

TAKATAAPUI - the only show in New Zealand for gay, lesbian and transgender Maori - returns to Maori Television for a fourth series (Tuesday June 13 at 10.30 PM)

Crimes against takataapui, queer characters in soaps, HIV, takataapui on the marae and the art of drag are among the topics tackled throughout the 20 episodes.

Rural takataapui and Maori takataapui living in Sydney will be included in the show for the first time.

This series will also feature a special to mark the 20th anniversary of the passing of the Homosexual Law Reform Bill.

Broadcast in both Maori and English, TAKATAAPUI is hosted by entertainer Ramon Te Wake (Ngapuhi, Ngati Whatua), actress Tania Simon (Ngapuhi, Ngati Rehia, Ngati Kura, Ngati Torehina), and dancer Taane Mete (Ngati Kahungunu).

Each episode has a theme, such as film and TV, rural New Zealand, family or drugs, and is divided into a number of segments so the bright, fast mix of items bounce from one to the other with the help of the presenters.

TAKATAAPUI is made by Front of the Box Productions. Producer Jude Anaru describes it as "quite a sophisticated programme with content that speaks to a broad audience with warmth and lots of information".

"Ramon, Tania and Taane are fantastic as presenters," Anaru says. "Tania's reo is inspiring and she connects really well with the people she interviews, especially when she attends very personal events like unveilings or civil unions.

"Ramon's storytelling is strong, creative and visual, while Taane compliments both of them with his fun approach. They are really interested in their subjects and take us with them on a journey into their stories."

Te Wake has a background in music, most notably with R'n'B band Pure Funk in the mid-1990s. A well-known model, she is also the first transgender girl to appear in music video clips and a Coca Cola commercial.

Simon is primarily a sign language interpreter and social worker in the deaf community. She also works as an actress, including roles in Shortland Street and the acclaimed short film Peach where she "almost kissed Lucy Lawless".

Mete is a graduate of the New Zealand School of Dance and has performed with numerous high profile groups including Black Grace Dance Company. A drag artiste, dancer, choreographer and model, he injects wild energy into the new series.

The fourth series of TAKATAAPUI premieres on Maori Television on Tuesday June 13 at 10.30 PM.

Ends


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