Hundreds of Ngāi Tahu families have travelled from all over Aotearoa and from further abroad to attend Hui-ā-Iwi, the Ngāi Tahu festival, which is underway in Ōtepoti (Dunedin).
The festival is a chance for Ngāi Tahu to come together to celebrate and share their culture and reconnect with each other.
Hui-ā-Iwi 2015 is hosted by three of our Ārai-te-Uru Papatipu Rūnanga – Te Rūnanga o Moeraki, Kāti Huirapa Rūnaka ki Puketeraki, and Te Rūnanga o Ōtākou.
Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Kaiwhakahaere, Tā Mark Solomon says Hui-ā-Iwi is an excellent opportunity for whānau to catch up and hear more about the progress of the tribe, “In March, we hosted Te Matatini, the country’s largest kapa haka festival, for the first time in 40 years. It was a memorable event with over 28,000 people attending over four days. We also celebrated another fantastic financial year and have initiated a number of significant programmes, so this gives us a chance to share all that and more.”
He says there have been key developments in mātauranga programmes (education); for instance the iwi has significantly lifted its spending in education with a more holistic focus from early childhood to late adulthood. This includes creating new work experience initiatives and celebrating successful graduates from the He Toki Māori trade training initiatives and Whenua Kura.
“Our tribal success means that we are in a position to support our whānau to reach greater levels of wellbeing through our programmes and direct distributions – this year the 18 Papatipu Rūnanga received $360,000 each, up from $320,000 in 2014; meaning that in total nearly six-and-a-half million was distributed directly to our communities.”
On Saturday, Hui-ā-Iwi will be opened up to the public and many locals from Dunedin are expected to attend.
During the open day, festival-goers can view the art showcased by a number of Ngāi Tahu artists at the Toi Māori exhibition, be wowed by kapa haka performances, watch headline acts perform during the Hui-ā-Iwi Showcase, feast on delicious kai, browse the market stalls, and learn new a new skill at one of the wānanga (workshops).
In the evening, He Waka Kōtuia, Maisey Rika, Ria Hall, Troy Kingi, Rob Ruha, the Modern Māori Quartet and Beau Monga & Crew will all take to the Showcase stage for the evening concert, that kicks off at 6.30pm.
Much of the event is being live steamed: http://ngaitahu.iwi.nz/ngai-tahu-events/hui-a-iwi-2015/
For more information on Hui-ā-Iwi please check out the online programme on the Ngāi Tahu website: http://ngaitahu.iwi.nz/ngai-tahu-events/hui-a-iwi-2015/programme/ or contact Leanne Scott.
Leanne Scott – Manager, Ngāi Tahu Communication Services.
Phone: 0212721170 – Email: [email protected]