What Haka Means To Me
Haka to me is more than just a dance...
It speaks a language, that represents a culture.
It is a physical representation which speaks through movement, energy and emotion.
It is an identity.
It forms part of who I am.
I've been performing Haka since as far as I can remember.
I grew up in the Hawkes Bay of New Zealand and attended Paki Paki Bi-Lingual school and was a member of their school Kapahaka group.
We performed all over New Zealand and rated the best in our region.
Through adulthood, Maori culture took a step to the side, and after moving to England, and being away from home for nearly a decade, I started to feel lost.
I joined the Ngati Ranana Maori Culture group in London and began feeling comfortable. Shortly after this, I learnt that my Great Great Grandfather, Waimarama Puhara, had composed the famous haka, Tika Tonu. Almost immediately, I started feeling whole again. I reconnected to my people... To my culture.
I started performing again and would perform on occasion doing Haka Workshops. It opened my eyes to this world of sharing our culture with people who are genuinely interested in learning more about us and in turn, want to learn more about themselves.
THAT, is the goal.
The goal of making a difference.
Nga Mihi E Hoa Ma!