Musical Matariki stars set to light up Te Papa

17 June 2015

A group of sensational Kiwi musicians will be in the spotlight tomorrow night at Te Papa’s Ngā Whetū o Matariki Concert.

The singers were found in a nationwide search which called for people from around the country to compose and perform an original waiata themed around Gallipoli.

The singers from the four winning entries are being brought to Wellington to perform alongside some of Aotearoa’s hottest musical talent including Ria Hall and Robert Ruha at Te Papa’s Te Marae.

Te Papa’s Senior Audience Engagement facilitator Mere Boynton says she was blown away with the calibre of the entries.

“The winners have brought to life this year’s Matariki theme He rau tangata, he koingo aroha (the people gather and affirm love in a myriad of ways) in incredibly moving and creative ways.”

32 year old Wiremu Hohaia composed his entry with his sister and her partner, “This was a good way to express who we are in terms of performers and musicians.”

“Our song is about our connection to the land, our whakapapa and our identity, so we think it fitted well with the theme of love and the sacrifice of those who fought at Gallipoli.”

Dannevirke school teacher Kiwa Goddard says he’s buzzing about the opportunity to perform with two of his biggest idols. “Performing alongside Ria and Rob is going to be so surreal. I’ve never won anything before, so to be picked for this is huge,” says the 24 year old.

The concert takes place at Te Papa’s Te Marae at 7pm tomorrow night, it’s open to the public and free of charge.

We gratefully acknowledge support from the Wellington Regional Amenities Fund: Hutt City Council, Kāpiti Coast District Council, Masterton District Council, Porirua City Council, Upper Hutt City Council, Wellington City Council

Media contact

Rebecca Edwards
029 601 0010

What is Matariki?

The star cluster Matariki (also known as the Pleiades) reappears in the dawn sky above Aotearoa New Zealand in late May or early June. The new moon following the rising of Matariki signals the Māori New Year. Customarily, this was a time to remember the deceased of the past year and to plan for the next year. Today, Matariki has been revived as a celebration of people, culture, language, spirituality, and history. It is a time for whānau (family) and friends to come together to reflect on the past 12 months and look towards the year ahead.