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A Call To Return Home 'Rangiaowhia'

A waiata written by four exceptional Māori Music Artists Mara TK, Ria Hall, Rākai Whauwhau and Hawkins, each with hononga to the koorero of Rangiaowhia. They had the privilege of sitting with Rangatira Tom Roa, Hazel Wander, Moepātu Borell and Bill Harris while learning about the history.

Artist Hawkins shared - "Rangiaowhia is about the physical presence returning home, those who know their whakapapa.”

Title: ‘Rangiaowhia’ is a call to return home. It is the second single release following the first single, ‘Apakura’, tributing the survivors of Rangiaowhia and their descendants, celebrating their continued existence today from the collective Album expected for release 2024, in acknowledgement of the 160th commemoration of Rangiaowhia.

Originally a highly prosperous community, it was known as a peaceful sanctuary of refuge until “a day of terrorism" or “Paahuatanga”, which saw the end of Rangiaowhia in 1864—recorded as one of the most horrific but unacknowledged massacres in New Zealand’s history, an invasion of colonial troops on the 21st of February 1864 resulted in over half of the 200 locals present being wounded, captured, raped, incinerated and murdered.

With lyrics from Mara TK describing the spiritual and physical existence of Rangiaowhia, Rangi is now standing in 'rangi i aowhia', and Ngāhuruhuru is where Papa is lying.

“I a Rangi e tū iho nei, te 'rangi i aowhia'!

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I a Papa e takoto mai nei, ko Ngāhuruhuru

Ko Rangiaowhia!”

Moepaatu Borell expressed her thanks to the artists - “Nga mihi. Ka akona e au te waiata nei ki taku mokopuna kia rere rawa atu tana aroha tupuna.”

Tom Roa shared - “Kei te nui te mihi ki te wairua auaha e rere nei ki ngā waiata me te haratau o te whai i te kaupapa o te hokia ki te ūkaipō.”

The waiata features Te Haona Kaha Kapahaka Ngaati Apakura descendants. It was recorded primarily at Kahotea Marae in Otorohanga—this waiata's location and creative process concord with the koorero—acknowledging the descendent's diaspora. The lyrics echo a call for descendants to return.

“Hoki mai e nga uri maheu, ngā ahi teretere”

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