16 Mar 2012

Australian-based Maori head to Canberra for kapa haka judging

8:48 pm on 16 March 2012

Next week thousands of Maori from around Australia will converge on Canberra for a regional competition to select finalists to send to Te Matatini national kapa haka festival in Rotorua next year.

The ACT Maori Performing Arts Corporation won the right to re-host the event which was declared the most successful Maori cultural festival in Australia last year.

The festival is held biannually to choose the top teams to represent their territory, state and Australia at the prestigious event hosted by Te Arawa next year.

A powhiri will formally welcome everyone to Canberra along with a smoke blessing ceremony hosted by a local Aboriginal group.

Three groups are coming from Western Australia, two teams from Victoria, two from New South Wales and four from Queensland on Friday March 23.