Te Mata

Corban Estate Arts Centre, Henderson, Auckland

02/03/2022 - 03/03/2022

Production Details

A retelling of the legend of Te Mata Peak

Creative Artistic Director Taane Mete
Kaiwhakahaere Toi Auaha 

Choreographer Taane Mete
Kaiwhakahaere Kanikani

Creative Producer Vanda Karolczak
Kaihanga Auaha 

Wahine Performer Kasina Campbell
Kaihaka Wahine 

Male Performer Taane Mete
Kaihaka Tane 

Co-director /Editor/ Visual effects
Kaiwhakahaere Tahi /Ētita/ Pãnga Ataata 

Director of Photography Joshua Faleatua
Kaiwhakahaere Whakaahua 

Composition and Sound Design Arli Liberman
Titonga me te hoahoa oro 

Voice Composer Taisha Tari
Titonga Reo

Kaikupu Whatumanawa Ngaronoa Renata
Mystic Poet

Creative Consultant Sam Evans
Kaitohutohu Auaha 

Drone Photography Sam Evans
Whakaahua Haruru 

Costume Design Rosemary Whitehead
Hoahoa Kakahu 

Rapaki creator Ngaromoana Raureti
Kaihanga pake harakeke


Kaitiaki Mana Whenua Terri Crawford 


Underwater Cinematography Toaki Okana
Kaitango whakaahua i raro i te wai 

Assistant Underwater Cinematography Jessica Gerhat
Kaiāwhina Kaitango whakaahua i raro i te wai

Makeup Consultant Stefan Knight
Kaitohutohu Whakapaipai

Graphic Designer Anna Karolczak-Young
Kaihoahoa Whakairoiro

Multi-discipline , Maori contemporary dance , Film , Dance , Cultural activation , Contemporary dance ,

6o mins

Resilience and respect, listening and challenging, safety and uncertainty.

Review by Dr Tia Reihana-Morunga 15th Mar 2022

In the unsettled territories that we are currently navigating, the health and wellbeing of ourselves, our whenua, our Arts sector and Dance communities… cannot be understated. Things are tough. Resilience and respect, listening and challenging, safety and uncertainty  within our community discourse can seem like feuding siblings all pushing for a seat at the kai table. And as we enter into the 3rd year of COVID landscapes what resonates now more than ever, is how incredibly essential our fragile arts sector is in the delivery of societal mirrors in which to make sense of what can seem like an insensible world. 

These past years I have not taken for granted the opportunities to gather in person to experience the power of arts. I also feel inherently aware of the immense challenges artists are facing to get equitable funding and support to ensure that these moments continue during a pandemic. That we may continue to relish in ‘the making’ for wellbeing is another layer to an already complex sector.

So, the chance to gather at Corbans Estate with all our resilience, hope, respect, facemasks, elbow taps to see the most recent film work by Taane Mete was felt as we lingered outside the old church venue in anticipation. A film inspired by the ancient Pūrākau of Rongokako and Hinerakau Te Mata presented a “re-imagined love story of 2 worlds that awaken from hibernation. A duality dance with Papatūānuku and the realms of the universe”. Performed by Taane and Kasina Campbell the re-imagination of Te Mata presented a moving pūrākau that worked to transcend the literal representations of connection to people, place and cosmos as they occur within a Te Ao Māori world view.  

The story as created on film threaded together the natural surrounds of epic environmental sea and landscapes and allegorical underwater exploration. Physical gesture, shape and embodied response to the distinct ātua storylines occur with strong scenery that shifts between surreal and realistic backgrounds.  From water to cosmos all the natural elements are featured as performers Taane and Kasina embody the strengths of the tūpuna Te Mata and Hinerakau. Navigating the realities of war and peace, hapū revenge and its intersection with love, the work is rich in metaphorical wondering.  

 Director of photography Joshua Faleatua worked alongside Taane to create rich visual reflections. Toaki Okano (underwater cinematography) and Jessica Gernat (underwater camera assistant) helped to create choreographic transitions that moved from above to underwater. Other collaborators included Sam Davis (drone photography), Arli Liberman (composition and sound design), Rosemary Whitehead (costume design), Louise Potiki Bryant (editor and visual effects), Taisha Tari (voice composer), Salvador Brown (taonga pūoro), Ngaronoa Renata (kaikupu whatumanawa), Terri Ripeka Crawford (kaitiaki mana whenua), Stef Knight (makeup consultant), Sam Evans (creative consultant) and Anna Karolczak (graphic design). The vast collective of creatives  presented a weaving together of visions to fruition. The result was a sophisticated reminiscence of art integral for the now.  

Te Mata was a generous gift, bringing together past stories to intersect our own and have us drift into other realms of virtual meaning making. It’s story to encapsulate the impossible tasks that Te Mata had to perform as means to show love to Hinerakau remind me of  the everyday multi-media reports that penetrate our homes. The stories of peoples sacrifice and endurance to foster the mana of each other appeared in this work as a portal of forgotten landscapes ripe for re-activation. Like the retelling of our pūrākau in intimate spaces where we can be swept up into familiarity.. or a moment of closeness in a Church at Corbans Estate. Unceremonious yet so wonderfully familiar and missed.



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