23 Jul 2008

10th Pacific Arts Festival officially opened in American Samoa

10:39 am on 23 July 2008

The tenth Festival of pacific arts being held in American Samoa is now officially open.

Around two thousand performers from more than 20 different countries

gathered at the Veteran's Memorial Stadium for the opening ceremony last night.

Leilani Momoisea reports from Pago Pago.

"Loud applause came from the packed out stadium as American Samoa's governor, Togiola Tulafono, declared the tenth Festival of Pacific Arts officially open. The Australia Torres Straits delegation led the way around the stadium, the crowds enjoyed the Cook Islands and Tahiti groups' thumping drums and swaying hips while the New Zealand delegation's kapahaka group delivered a spine-tingling performance. Each Pacific group had just 3 minutes to give their best performance to the crowd, bef ore they each presented Govenor Tulafono with gifts from their homeland. The group from Samoa wan't able to stick to the time limit, performing, among a number of items, the crowd-pleasing slapdance and fire dance. After American Samoa's large Tagaloa creation production, gospel group the Katina Brothers sang the ceremony to a close. The festival runs until the second of August."