The NZSO will accompany an 80-strong choir this week in a celebration of Pasifika music, combining symphony with songs from the Pacific.
Following a sold out concert in Wellington last year, Mana Moana will fill the space at Spark Arena, Auckland.
In what should be a joyous event for the Pasifika community, almost 200 musicians and singers on stage will reimagine well-known traditional and contemporary songs.
Mana Moana producer, Tana Tupai says “It’s a beautiful thing a lot of our Pasifika people don't get to see live orchestra. Seeing these instruments come to life blends with the fusion of the orchestra and further elevates the experience”.
A keyboardist and backing-vocalist for his band, Tomorrow People and a mentor with a focus on Pasifika artists, Tupai has also been working on the digitisation of music from the Pacific.
He’s passionate about ensuring Pasifika artists are knowledgeable, protected, educated and adopt an entrepreneurial mindset when setting out in their music careers in the digital and social media age of music.
Tana Tupai spoke to Culture 101’s Perlina Lau about what Mana Moana means for the Pasifika community and why he feels so strongly about guiding and mentoring Pasifika artists.