December 01, 2020
Te reo poetry film wows Irish judges
New Zealand entrant Noho Mai has won the eighth International Poetry-Film Competition run by Irish arts organisation Ó Bhéal.
The 10-minute te reo Māori film by poet Peta-Maria Tunui, Charles Olsen, Waitahi Aniwaniwa McGee, Shania Bailey-Edmonds Jesse-Ana Harris, and Lilian Pallares was developed out of an online poetry workshop, with its creators scattered across the globe.
It uses the idea of a bird’s flight to explore life’s journey, the longing to return to the nest, and the life-giving connection with ancestors.
Olsen, who lives in Spain with his Colombian wife Pallares, says the sound of te reo drew people into the film.
"When people hear Māori they are really attracted to the sound of it. There are a lot of people and traditional languages from Latin America I have heard which has similar sound qualities so that is something that is attractive to other audiences from different cultures," he says.
Charles Olsen says Noho Mai’s theme of journeying and returning home also resonates with people in the time of COVID.
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