June 23, 2023
Māori theatre a high wire act
Rangatahi doesn’t have to run away to join a circus – they can head out to Te Pou Theatre at Henderson’s Corban Estate tomorrow.
Te Pou and circus theatre company The Dust Palace are combining forces for a Māori Performing Arts Open Day to showcase their work and introduce a circus school for young Māori artists, Te Kura Maninirau.
Studio manager and teacher Natasha Van Etten says the school, which starts in term three, is aimed at tamariki aged from 7 to 14.
She says circus offer Māori a dynamic new way to tell their pūrākau.
“I think when we talk about toi Maori and Maori performing arts it’s hard to class each thing into its own little category because as Maori we adapt and we pool our knowledge to create something together and to create something new,” she says.
The open day runs from 11am to 3pm and features circus and acrobatic acts, appearances from the cast members of the musical show Kōpū, seminars from Māori musicians, a poi workshop led by members of Te Roopū Manutaki, and a special performance from couth circus company Te Māwhaiwhai.