Entertainment | Indigenous

‘Hold onto the dream’: Ka Whawhai Tonu theme song released today

Tiki Taane & Arli Liberman - Hold On To The Dream Ft. Louis Baker

This year marks the 160th anniversary of the bloody New Zealand Wars battle at Ōrākau in which Tūhoe, Ngāti Raukawa, Waikato and Maniapoto warriors and whānau were slaughtered by a large British force.

A mere 300 Māori (men, women and children) defended the pa against 1500 British soldiers who, having won the battle, continued to kill 150 defenders, including children, as they fled.

The new film Ka Whawhai Tonu - Struggle without End directed by Michael Jonathan (Tainui, Mātaatua, Te Arawa) tells the story from the Māori point of view.

The composers for the film, Tiki Taane (Ngāti Maniapoto) and Arli Liberman, were challenged by the filmmakers to write a theme and closing song for the film that would emotionally, spiritually, and sonically lift the audience from the gravity of the historical kaupapa portrayed in the film

Today, their theme song Hold onto the dream, has been released and will be available via all digital platforms from June 21.

Louis Baker (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Tū) is the vocalist for the track which includes themes of hope, unity and liberation.

The film premieres on June 17 and opens in cinemas on June 27.