28 May 2024

Te Matatini kapa haka competition extended to five days

4:40 pm on 28 May 2024
Team Angitū performs.

Team Angitū performs during Te Matatini in 2023. Photo: Kiriana Eparaima-Hautapu / Supplied / Te Matatini

A record number of teams qualifying has meant the national kapa haka competition Te Matatini will be extended by one day.

The festival will now span five days, beginning with a pōwhiri on 24 February, with finals set for 1 March.

The number of rōpu able to qualify for finals remains 12.

The unprecedented level of interest highlighted the "incredible talents and dedication" within Aotearoa's kapa haka community, Te Matatini National Board chair Tā Herewini Parata said.

In total, 55 teams will take the stage in Taranaki next year for the Te Matatini o Te Kāhui Maunga Festival.

Last year's Te Matatini Herenga Waka Herenga Tangata, hosted by Tāmaki, saw 45 teams qualify for the top tournament.

Te Kāhui Maunga chairperson Elijah Pue said extending the tournament would honour Te Matatini's commitment to manāki.

"We are thrilled to welcome everyone to Te Matatini for an additional day, allowing us to share even more of our vibrant culture and celebrate together with all our manuhiri," he said.

Te Matatini said it would support kapa haka rōpu with adjusting to the new schedule and the changes would mean teams had a better opportunity to showcase their skills.

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