Te Papa seeks musical Matariki stars

17 April 2015

Put down your air guitar and pick up the real thing.

Te Papa launches a nationwide search for four sensational musicians today as part of its 2015 Matariki celebrations.

Te Papa is inviting musicians to compose and perform an original waiata themed around Gallipoli for its Ngā Whetū o Matariki waiata music competition.

Te Papa’s Senior Audience Engagement facilitator Mere Boynton says the theme for Te Papa’s Matariki celebrations this year is "‘He rau tangata, he kōingo aroha’" (the people gather and affirm love in a myriad of ways).

“"We'’re looking for songs that honour the idea of love. Your waiata could honour our tūpuna (ancestors) who fought at Gallipoli, or else you could get creative around aroha for people or iwi in times of conflict",” says Ms Boynton.

Ms Boynton says entries can be in Te Reo Māori or English.

Contestants need to submit a video of their waiata and the four winners will be flown to Wellington and take their place onstage at the Wellington Matariki Festival concert on 18 June. They will be performing alongside some of Aotearoa’'s hottest musical talent, including Ria Hall and Rob Ruha.

Te Papa is also collaborating with seven museums and galleries throughout the wider Wellington region to present Matariki Wellington, a month-long region-wide Matariki arts festival running from Saturday 13 June. The festival will feature a range of free events to mark the Mâori New Year.

Competition entries close midnight 15 May 2015.


  • In 2015, Matariki, the Māori New Year, will start on 18 June
  • The Wellington Matariki Festival runs from 13 June to 12 July
  • Te Papa has collaborated with seven museums and galleries throughout the wider Wellington Region – City Gallery Wellington, Pataka Art + Museum, Carter Observatory, Expressions Whirinaki, Museum of Wellington City and Sea, Mahara Gallery, and The Dowse Art Museum – to develop Matariki Wellington, a regional Matariki arts festival.


Media contact

Jenny Bridgen, Te Papa Senior Communications Adviser
04 381 7752 or 022 0100 901