Six Te Arawa kapa haka made it to Te Matatini this year and five of them made it into the top 12 finalists. Now they have returned home to raise pūtea for whānau affected by Cyclone Gabrielle in Te Tai Rāwhiti and Ngāti Kahungunu on Sunday at Te Kouramāwhitiwhiti (the Rotorua lakefront).
It will be a day for whānau to gather, a chance to connect with Māori culture and a time to give gratitude and assist those that who support and aid the most.
Watu Mihinui, of Tuhourangi - Ngāti Wahiao descent, is delighted to be able to support such a generous kaupapa, one that will live on in the thoughts of both those who will perform and those who will help and support in the financing of whānau impacted by Cyclone Gabrielle.
“The kaupapa came from a few heads, the genesis came from an arts trust, which had available funding and as it was looking for kaupapa to support, the chairperson spoke with some of us from Te Arawa Kapa haka about the possibility of doing a concert with the six groups who went to Te Matatini, to support the flood victims in Kahungunu and Te Tai Rāwhiti.”
“We will have all six Te Matatini teams from our Te Arawa kapa haka who will perform their full Matatini bracket on Sunday and, through lunch breaks, we have some minor supporting acts, focusing on rangatahi Māori.”
Mihinui says she is excited for this weekend's kaupapa ‘Waipuketia ki te aroha’ and is thankful to all groups who will perform.
The event is free to attend, and there will be a special area inside for whānau who want to contribute by giving items and pūtea to support those in Te Tai Rāwhiti and Ngāti Kahungunu.
“So if you appreciate kapa haka, and you are a proud Māori, not necessarily Te Arawa and you want to see some fine kapa haka exponents, come on Sunday.
“There will be kai stalls available, bring a picnic, and be prepared for six to seven hours of the best kapa haka in Te Arawa.”