Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


Obituary : Wi Kuki Kaa

Obituary : Wi Kuki Kaa - shining light of Maori Theatre

Dr Pita Sharples and Tariana Turia, Co-leader, Maori Party

20 February 2006

Aue, aue! Kua tau te hau tonga, ara te hau makariri o te ringa kaha o Aitua. Kei te rangatira, kei te hoa, haere atu ra ki o taua tupuna matua. He whariki mo matou nga morehu o nga waka. Haere te rangatira, haere.

The Maori Party today mourns the loss of an extra-ordinary performer, a multi-talented artist, and a beloved personality of Ngati Porou and Ngati Kahungunu, who delighted in treating the world as a stage, Wi Kuki Kaa.

“Aotearoa is all the richer for the gifts Wi Kuki shared with the nation” stated Dr Pita Sharples, Co-leader, Maori Party. “He has been in our theatres, on our large screens and in our homes through television, video and now DVD for over four decades”.

“Wi Kuki is an old boy of Te Aute College who will be missed through-out the motu” said Dr Sharples.

Wi Kuki Kaa is remembered for his award-winning role as ‘Iwi’ of the Ngati Tribe in Ngati (1987), as a homeless man confronting memories of the Vietnam War in Turangawaewae (2003); as ‘Old Koni’ in Taniwha-Water Spirit; as ‘Wiremu’ in Utu (1983); as ‘Rewi’ in Te Rua (1991) as ‘King Tynah’ in The Bounty (1984) and for an extensive range of other films, and short features.

“He was an outstanding actor who was able to bring life to a huge range of characters” said Dr Sharples. “Indeed, he was a very versatile performer - able to give of his best to roles as diverse as the ‘travelling scarecrow maker’ in Worsel Gummidge; ‘Bible Bill’ in the TV series The Strip, or ‘Nikolu Yaramoto’ in Spyforce (The Samurai)".

“Wi has left a proud legacy of talent and composition” stated Tariana Turia, co-leader, Maori Party. “Whilst the nation is right now able to admire his distinctive presence in The River Queen (as the grandfather), our tamariki and kura will have an enduring memory through the many different stories he recorded for school publications".

“I will always remember Wi Kuki for demonstrating the passion of performance” said Tariana Turia. “He was the ultimate artist - performing Henrik Ibsen’s “An Enemy of the People”; composing bicultural opera and Taku Wana, the Enduring Spirit with Helen Fisher; writing short stories and other literature; and more recently an amazingly evocative music-video clip with Trinity Roots (Little Things). His strength of character was able to appeal to all generations, and make vital connections across all cultures".

“Wi Kuki had such energy and charisma that I think we all saw him as immortal” said Tariana Turia. “In fact, it was only just before Christmas that he withdrew from the role of ailing war hero Te Keepa Rangihiwinui in Dr Buller’s Birds - Survival of the Fittest, which opens this Saturday night as part of the International Arts Festival. Knowing Wi, I am sure his presence will be there on opening night".

“Wi Kuki Kaa was a veteran artist in all senses of the word” said Tariana Turia. “ “We share with his whanau, the profound loss of a remarkable man. His people of Ngati Porou refer to Te Uranga o te Ra, the shining of the rays on Mount Hikurangi. With the passing of this radiant light of the Maori theatre world, the clouds have no doubt settled upon Mount Hikurangi, and upon us all, as we farewell this descendant of Ohinewaiapu”.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news