Aspiring kapa haka performers are filling site corridors with the sweet sound of waiata as preparations for the biennial kapa haka competition - Te Mata Wānanga – are in full swing.
Tauranga will be hosting Te Mata Wānanga 2015 for the first time in the competition’s 10- year history and site manager Morena Tawa is thrilled they have been bestowed with the honour.
“It is going to be great . . . we are all very excited here in Tauranga and are counting down the days to Te Mata Wānanga,” says Morena.
“We invite you to join us to view the finest kapa haka teams Te Wānanga o Aotearoa has to offer, to enjoy the festivities and to witness which team shall be judged the finest on the day.”
The inaugural Te Mata Wānanga was held at Papaīoea in 2005.
It was established as a means to unite the organisation as it faced Te Anga Whakamua that saw the Crown take over the management of the organisation.
Te Puna Mātauranga, with two championship titles in 2011 and 2013, will be trying for a hat trick this year as they return to the competition stage.
“It is going to be a fierce competition and a great occasion also for celebration as we honour who we are and where we are from through kapa haka,” says Morena.
Te Mata Wānanga begins with a pōwhiri at Maungatapu Marae, Tauranga on Tuesday September 29.
Competition day is Wednesday September 30 at the ASB TECT Arena, Mt Maunganui.