Scoop has an Ethical Paywall
Work smarter with a Pro licence Learn More

Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


The Haka Party Incident Returns To Tāmaki Makaurau For 4 Shows Only

Following its renowned sold-out premiere season in 2021 The Haka Party Incident is finally back by popular demand at Te Pou Theatre, Henderson from 8-11 June 2023, ahead of a 6-centre national tour.

Provocative, resonant, and joyfully unforgettable, The Haka Party Incident innovatively combines documentary and Kapa Haka to thrilling effect. Awarded Best Play by a Māori Playwright as well as The Dean Parker Adaptation for Non-Fiction Award, (2021 Adam New Zealand) the production is a not-to-be-missed theatre event.

“…A gift every New Zealander deserves to enjoy.” – Theatreview

Before writer and director Katie Wolfe (Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Toa Rangatira) brought The Haka Party Incident verbatim theatre production to the stage, many New Zealanders were unaware of the titular three-minute conflict. In 1979 University of Auckland engineering students, rehearsing their annual tradition of a mock haka, were confronted by the activist group He Taua. That confrontation led to the nation’s baptism of fire into addressing systemic racism.

“Masterfully brings to life a bold act of resistance….intensely funny, to heartbreakingly sad in a single beat– Theatreview

With dynamic performances from Roimata Fox (Ngāti Porou, Rongomaiwahine) (Waru, Muru), Nī Dekkers-Reihana (Ngāi Tu Te Auru, Ngā Puhi) (Waru, Anahera), Lauren Gibson (Be Longing, Anne Boleyn), Patrick Tafa (48 Nights on Hope Street, Westside), Aidan O’Malley (Bystander, Good Idea at the Time) and Kauri Williams (Ngāti Tūwharetoa) (Astroman, The Brokenwood Mysteries), the ambitious stage production requires them to divide up 38 different roles. The students, activists and many others directly involved or impacted in and by the Haka Party Incident were interviewed by writer Katie Wolfe over a two-year period. Their verbatim accounts of what actually happened in 1979 are directly voiced onstage.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

“…the relatively young ensemble never falters, effortlessly moving through distinct characters in the blink of an eye, and powerfully evoking the pain and conflict experienced by all sides.…a prime example of theatre's power to inform and enlighten audiences as well as entertain.” – NZ Herald

Haka, he taonga tuku iho or ‘a treasure from ancestors’ is not only at the centre of the historic incident but also forms the play’s structure. The cast perform historical and contemporary haka with power and skill.

Honoured to make the recently opened kaupapa Māori performing arts venue, Te Pou theatre, Henderson its whare for four nights, this venue is especially poignant for the cast and creative team.

Director/writer Katie Wolfe notes “Te Pou is a dynamic space very like the Matatini stage. The Haka Party Incident is ideally suited to shine in this new venue, and we’re excited to share this very Tāmaki Makaurau story with Auckland audiences."

Given the stellar reviews and previously seen high ticket demand, audiences are encouraged to book soon to avoid disappointment, and to make use of the theatre’s free parking only 30 minutes from Auckland’s CBD.

8-11 JUNE
Tickets $15-35, plus booking fees.

Writer & Director Katie Wolfe (Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Toa Rangatira)
Kaiako Kapa Haka/ Kaitito Haka Nīkau Balme (Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Tama, Ngāti Toa Rangatira)
Sound Design& Musical Direction Kingsley Spargo
Taonga Pūoro Whetu Silver (Ngāti Pakahi ki Whangaroa, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāpuhi)
Set Design John Verryt
Lighting Design Jo Kilgour
Costume Design Alison Reid

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.