Air New Zealand and Te Matatini sign alliance agreement
Air New Zealand and Te Matatini Society Incorporated have signed a strategic alliance agreement to work closely together to develop and showcase the Te Matatini kapa haka (Māori performing arts) festival as New Zealand’s premium cultural event, promoting Aotearoa New Zealand to the world.
Under the agreement the two organisations will collaborate to promote the festival to new audiences in New Zealand and around the world, as well as enhance the country’s cultural reputation by showcasing the best of Māori performing arts internationally.
The biennial festival is the world’s largest celebration of indigenous performing arts. In 2019 the event will be held at Wellington’s Westpac Stadium from 20-24 February, the largest venue to house the festival to date. Over the weekend 46 teams from New Zealand and Australia who have made it through their respective regional competitions compete for the grand prize of Te Toa Whakaihuwaka and the opportunity to represent New Zealand at major international events.
Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Christopher Luxon says the airline is thrilled to be able to play a part in showcasing Māori performing arts to the world as part of its commitment to revitalising Te Reo Māori.
“Kapa haka is so important to New Zealand – it’s one of the things that makes our country unique, and I’m really proud we’re working together with Te Matatini to take the festival to new heights and enhance our country’s cultural reputation both nationally and internationally,” says Mr Luxon.
Te Matatini Chief Executive Carl Ross says the organisation is pleased to be working together with Air New Zealand and aligning key strategies to positively contribute to New Zealand’s diverse communities as well as bring the unique experience of Te Matatini and kapa haka to a global audience.
“The official theme of the 2019 festival is ‘Te Matatini ki te Ao’, which means ‘Te Matatini to the world’. The theme promotes the status of Te Matatini as a world-class festival and a global stage for Maori performance excellence featuring the very best in competitive kapa haka,” says Mr Ross.