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Mangatu Fired Up on Eve of Tamararo Auahi Kore

Media Statement

Friday 4 July 2008

Mangatu Fired Up on Eve of Tamararo Auahi Kore

Mangatu kapa haka competitors are fired up and passionate about upholding the name of Mangatu on the eve of this year’s annual kapa haka festival Tamararo Auahi Kore.

The committed team disappeared from Tamararo in 1986 but in 2005 they returned, bigger, better and stronger than ever.

“Last year’s competition really sparked the group up,” said Mangatu Kaumatua Buddy Smith. “This year we have young, innovative tutors and the group is very committed to a great performance.”

Whatever the outcome, the performers will do justice not only to themselves, but to Mangatu.

“Everyone realises it is not just about individuals, it is about the whole group, and upholding the name of Mangatu,” said kapa haka tutor Rawinia Puia.

“We have 40 people on stage, but a whole community is working behind the scenes, and that drives the pride and motivation of the group.”

This year’s Maori performing arts competition has gone smokefree to become Tamararo Auahi Kore. Smoking is forbidden inside and outside the event venue, and there will be people on hand to support the resolve.

Local smoking cessation providers like Turanga Health and Ngati Porou Hauora Primary Health Organisation will also be there so smokers can easily sign up to quit. Kapa haka participants have already received resources to help any smokers access smoking cessation services.

Ms Puia said many of the smokers in the Mangatu group had slowed or stopped their smoking habit because the physicality of the performance was leaving them breathless.

“That is what kapa haka is all about. It is about culture, but it is also about auahi, about health; physical, mental and spiritual.”

Tamararo Auahi Kore is at the Gisborne Show Grounds Event Centre on Saturday 5 July, from 9am.

Ends

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