Te Matatini: secure, confident and expert in our own language and culture.

He Ngakau Aroha – ‘A Loving Heart’ was the theme of this auspicious biennal event – Te Matatini held recently in Te Waipounamu.  The theme was to acknowledge the manaaki and whanaungatanga expressed to Christchurch following the earthquakes.

Published: Rāpare, 19 Poutūterangi, 2015 | Thursday, 19 March 2015

The Waitaha Cultural Council, Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Christchurch City Council and their 400 + volunteers did themselves proud, hosting more than 1,800 performers and the thousands that poured through the gates each day.  Te Matatini Management Committee produced an outstanding event, a festival to remember.

A few of our Te Puni Kōkiri staff at Te Matatini.

Te Puni Kōkiri is a proud Strategic Partner of Te Matatini.  Our Te Waipounamu office also hosted our tent where people could subscribe to receive Kōkiri and Kōkiritia, chat with our team, and at times shelter from the elements.


New subscriptions from Te Matatini went in a prize draw. Our congratulations go to Rebecca Stevenson of Christchurch. Rebecca will collect her Dre Beats headphones from the Te Waipounamu team this week. Ngahuia Waipara of Titahi Bay, Wi Wihapi of Awanui, and Sharee Awhitu of Hawera each won JB Hi Fi gift cards.

Proud matua Corey Stephens stands in front of our banner which features his son and nephews (left to right): Uira Wirepakio (sitting), Cerwin Puhetaha Kingi (obscured), Wairere Brown (sitting, back), Tukino Turu, and Poupatate Jerry.

Amongst the visitors to our tent, it was lovely to meet Corey Stephens (standing in front of the banner), who was at Te Matatini –the proud matua to the boys who feature on our newest banner. From left to right: Uira Wirepakio (sitting), Cerwin Puhetaha Kingi (obscured), Wairere Brown (sitting, back), Tukino Turu, and Poupatate Jerry.


This photo was taken at Rangiaowhia last year, at one of the many events throughout Waikato and Bay of Plenty commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Waikato Wars.

Some of our staff were also involved backstage at Te Matatini. Pouwhakahaere - Lewis Moeau provided English translations of performances in real-time as part of Hakarongo Mai He has held this role for many Te Matatini festivals. Hakarongo Mai is a unique feature making kapa haka performances accessible to all audiences, not just the haka mad. Policy Analyst Aaron ‘Goose’ Munro ‘went back in time’ to be producer to his ‘old school crew’ Tahu FM, the iwi station broadcast live from Te Matatini at Hagley Park.

Our Communications Team managed 312 accredited reporters and technicians from regional, national and 11 international media organisations.  Along with hosting media, advising story leads, and managing photography, the team posted updates and lots of photos to social media. 

Finally – congratulations to all of the teams that took to the atamira at Te Matatini, and once again thank you to Waitaha Cultural Council Trust and Ngai Tāhu for your beautiful hospitality. 

Ngā manaakitanga,