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São Paulo to get a taste of kiwi haka

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São Paulo to get a taste of kiwi haka

10 April 2015

Brazil is about to get a real cultural flavor of New Zealand with a special kapa haka (Māori dance group) performance at a Designer Tours tourism roadshow in São Paulo in March.

The kapa haka group will be in South America to support the opening of the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute (NZMACI) exhibition, Tuku Iho, in Santiago in March. The exhibition will open in Buenos Aires in Argentina in June, followed by São Paulo later this year.

Tuku Iho|Living Legacy is an exhibition of time honoured Māori art works, including more than 80 art works of wood, pounamu (greenstone), bone, stone, bronze and flax mediums created at the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute (NZMACI). It also includes a living culture component, with the NZMACI | Nga Kete Tuku Iho Kapa Haka group touring and performing alongside the exhibition.

Part way through the Santiago tour, four of the 14 strong kapa haka group will travel to São Paulo to join Tourism New Zealand and a cluster of New Zealand tourism operators to perform at the tourism roadshow. The special performance will be held on March 18 for travel agents and media at the Designer Tours event.  

Tuku Iho is accompanied by a series of high profile events and activities designed to engage and acknowledge key stakeholders including the tourism, business and education sectors. New Zealand officials from Tourism NZ, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Education NZ, and Te Puia | NZMACI will all be present in the region to support the exhibition and associated events.

“Tuku Iho is a tribute to our culture and a way to extend and reconnect our indigenous roots to people and cultures around the globe,” says NZMACI director, Karl Johnstone.

“The exhibition helps preserve and promote Māori culture, allowing us to foster a wider awareness of Māori stories, values and traditions.”

NZMACI is located at Te Puia**, one of New Zealand’s oldest visitor attractions. The Institute is responsible for the protection and perpetuation of Māori arts, crafts and culture and is home to the national schools of wood carving, pounamu, stone and bone carving, weaving and waka (canoe) building.

“Tuku Iho is a core representation of our mandate and the work we do. It reflects the passing down of knowledge to preserve our unique cultural heritage.

“The exhibition also provides an opportunity for our artists and performers to interact with the arts community and exhibition visitors, providing insights about Māori culture and connecting the art to the people it comes from,” says Mr Johnstone.

Te Puia general manager sales and marketing, Kiri Atkinson-Crean, says cultural exchanges, such as that provided by Tuku Iho, are an important part of doing business with different cultures and countries, providing the opportunity to build stronger connections and relationships.

“Tuku Iho provides a way to make a connection with people, Governments, officials and industry representatives, and allows us to leverage and support our tourism and export efforts in a relevant and genuine way.

“The exhibition, kapa haka performances and associated events will literally bring our unique Rotorua and New Zealand experience to life for everyone involved.”

More on Tuku Iho