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An Inspirational Story from the ASB Polyfest

An Inspirational Story from the ASB Polyfest

Year 11 Student, Josie Marie Matthewman may provide the necessary inspiration for Rutherford College when their kapa haka group hit the stage at the ASB Polyfest tomorrow (Saturday, 15 March).

Josie Marie is an extraordinary performer who is deaf, and relies on her brother in the kapa haka to interpret instructions to her in sign. She can keep beat and perform with the group, but is unable to sing or voice any words.

She attends Kelston Girls College, at their Kelston Deaf Education Centre, and has been welcomed into the Rutherford College kapa haka group. She is an inspiration to the rest of the group, and will be looking to help them win the top Maori division at the 2008 ASB Polyfest, when Rutherford College perform on stage at 1:30pm.

The top Maori division is one of the five cultural competitions in action today, along with the Cook Islands, Nuie, Samoan and Tongan. All five stages will be awash with colour and culture from the school performing groups.

The school groups will compete on stage from 9am – 5pm tomorrow. The winning groups from each of the stages will take back to school trophies, and the opportunity to perform at the first ever ASB Polyfest Showcase. The gala event takes place at the Telstra Clear Pacific Events Centre on Saturday, 29 March and features the top groups from the Polyfest.

The 2008 ASB Polyfest has seen large crowds, and plenty of passionate performances over the last three days. An estimated crowd of 30,000 people attended the festival today.

Tomorrow (Saturday, 15 March) is the final day of the festival, and the day when the winning cultural groups are announced.

It is also a finale of sorts for event director, Craig Seuseu who is taking a break from the managing the festival, after 7 years at the helm. He has been instrumental in the growth and professionalism of the festival, in conjunction with the host schools, which is Wesley College this year.

Craig will now focus on coaching NZ’s top men’s beach volleyball team in their quest to qualify for the Beijing Olympics.

The public can experience the 2008 ASB Polyfest for the admission of only $3, at the Manukau Sports Bowl tomorrow (Saturday, 15 March).

Media can collect a media pass for the ASB Polyfest from the Media Office which is at the Boundary Road entrance to the festival.

The stage schedules for the day can be found on the website www.asbpolyfest.co.nz

ends

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