TAKITIMU is the first ever full-scale production by Te Wharekura o Mauao at Baycourt, and is a devised, bilingual theatre extravaganza that features singing, dance, haka and authentic storytelling and text (monologue and poetry), encouraging audiences to grab hold of the future, but always remember where you come from.
Directed and designed by Jason Te Mete of Tuatara Collective, collaborating with a team of highly experienced kaiako from Te Wharekura o Mauao, TAKITIMU is part of the Creatives in Schools programme through the Ministry of Education.
The mighty waka Takitimu carried our tīpuna (ancestors) across the Pacific, a life-changing journey to find new lands, and to find themselves.
Weaved amongst the voyaging tales are local stories about our more recent tīpuna who found themselves in situations that required them to call upon these ancestors for strength and guidance. In sharing their stories we explore the challenges that they had to overcome to survive, and find similarities to the challenges that our rangatahi face today.
These stories are based on fact, some perhaps exaggerated for theatrical effect. Aroha and care is given to ensure these stories are developed and shared with respect. Some include the Māori Wars, Pukehinahina and Te Ranga, WW1 and WW2 (Māori Battalion), Ngā Tamatoa and the Polynesian Panthers, and tackle issues pertinent to Tauranga Moana such as climate change, local politics and the renaissance of Te Reo Māori.
Scattered with Aotearoa songs by prominent Māori artists Maisey Rika, Rob Ruha, Teeks and Tauranga’s own Stan Walker and Ria Hall performed live by students (with a full band), dance elements including contemporary fused with hip-hop, traditional Pasifika Siva and Fakaupaki, as well as poi, mau rakau/taiaha and haka, audiences are in for a powerful and moving experience showcasing the mana of our incredibly talented rangatahi Māori.