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Cook Islands Performing Artist in Residence


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Cook Islands Performing Artist in Residence

Whitireia performing arts programme leader, Tuaine Robati, has been selected as the Pacific Dance Artist in Residence for 2014. This artist in residence is offered to established dance practitioners of Pacific Island heritage and is the only one of its kind offered in New Zealand.

The working title of this year’s residency is Pureu; meaning blossom or bloom. The aim of the residency, which is workshop based, is to foster and enhance pride in being of Cook Islands descent – this is through engaging in heritage, dance and culture. Workshops are tailored for secondary school students who will be taught by Robati and guided by Whitireia Performing Arts graduates who will also be mentored as part of the residency.

This residency is a wonderful opportunity for students said Tuaine. “It will build confidence and pride in Cook Islands heritage as well as raise educational aspirations and achievement for students. I am excited to be given this opportunity.”

The residency will see Robati based in Porirua at Pataka Art + Museum, on Wednesday afternoons and Saturday. This is the fifth year of the residency and the second consecutive year that it has been hosted in Porirua.

In addition to teaching on the performing arts programme at Whitireia, Robati is also the Artistic Director and International Tour Director for the groups of students he leads to international festivals each year; he has been doing this since 1994. He is also a Cooks Islands Community Liaison at Whitireia. In 2013, he was awarded a New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to Education and Pacific Communities.

The residency was launched on Saturday 26 April.

The Pacific Artist Dance Artist in Residence is supported by Pacific Dance New Zealand, DANZ (Dance Aotearoa New Zealand), Creative New Zealand and Pataka Art + Museum.


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