Skip Content
Elsie-solo

Photo caption: Elsie Rakuraku at Te Matatini

A new Māori performing arts course being offered in Whakatane for the first time can help make a real difference in the lives of rangatahi (young people), says its highly experienced kaiako (tutor).

Elsie Rakuraku (Te Aupōuri, Ngāpuhi and Ngāti Kurī) is starting the Toi Maruata Level 3 course next month for Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.

The course will involve tauira (students) developing an arts project or production, involving Māori arts such as kapa haka, drama and dance.

“We’ll collectively decide on the exact nature of what we do once all the tauira are together,” says Elsie (63), who helped start the Rotorua campus in 1993, where the first Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Māori performing arts course was offered.

Toi Maruata Level 3 will involve a marae stay a month for five months, plus a once a week face-to-face class in Whakatane. The course is fees free.

Elsie has a particularly strong background in kapa haka which she says keeps her excited about passing on knowledge to rangatahi.

“I have a passion for kapa haka and what it brings to our young people, as they get a bit passionate too.

“I can see what it does to rangatahi – it gives them self-esteem, for example. I can see the difference it makes.”

Elsie-whanau

Photo caption: Elsie with her husband, and a group including a son and two daughters. Kapa haka has been “our life as a whanau”, says Elsie.

The Level 3 course is a potential bridging course for rangatahi wanting to do higher level Māori performing arts courses at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, Elsie adds.

People interested in the course can visit our Toi Maruata programme page or contact Elsie at elsie.rakuraku@twoa.ac.nz and on 022 401 5892.

 Back to news & events

Published On: 23 July, 2019

Article By: Stephen Ward



Other Articles

  • 24 January 2023

    From Kenya to Aotearoa - Toi and its many connection's

    Jennifer Dickerson, a self-proclaimed "Third Culture Kid" due to her unique upbringing around the world, has discovered who she is through art.

  • 19 December 2022

    Masters opens door to book project

    Juggling work as Communications Advisor for Te Wānanga o Aotearoa while completing his masters, and writing a book has meant Tracey Cooper’s plate has been rather full recently. Fortunately with his exegesis completed, book published and work in wind-down mode for Christmas he’s able to take a breather and reflect on his journey through study.

  • 15 December 2022

    ‘Rererangi ki te Ao’ Opens doors at Kirikiriroa Airport

    Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Kairuruku and Pouwhenua Whakairo (master carver), Professor Kereti G. Rautangata, (nō Ngāti Mahanga, Ngāti Koroki Kahukura) and his team of carvers have left their mark on a significant piece of the Waikato landscape.

  • 14 December 2022

    Making a difference with mau rākau

    Tamiaho Searancke, who started learning the art of mau rākau at age three from his kuia and kaumatua, has guided another cohort of tauira through their journey of learning the ancient Māori martial art.