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Te Matatini Society Inc

Te Matatini Society Inc.

Te Matatini ‘the many faces’ was incorporated in 1972 to foster, develop and protect excellence in Māori performing arts.  Alongside Te Matatini’s biennial national Kapa Haka festival the society also supports Māori performing arts in schools, at festivals, in wananga, with businesses and government departments, with master classes and on the international stage.

The Ministry manages Te Matatini's relationship with the Crown and administers government funding. A National Committee of representatives elected by the rohe governs the Society. A smaller Executive Committee oversees operations. The representatives appoint the Chair.

Te Matatini is a significant cultural festival and the pinnacle event for Māori performing arts. Held every two years, it is one of the most highly anticipated events for performers, their whānau and the mass of passionate kapa haka fans throughout the world. The festival prides itself on being whānau friendly, smoke, and alcohol free event. It has an open door policy, where all people are welcome to come and experience the timeless tradition and spectacle of kapa haka.

In October 2020, Te Matatini announced that a programme of 12 regional ngahau (non-competitive) kapa haka events will take place throughout 2020 and 2021. In July the Te Matatini National Board made the decision to postpone the national 2021 Te Matatini Herenga Waka Herenga Tangata Festival until 2022 due to the risks to kaumātua and whānau posed by COVID-19. The revised regional programme fills the void left by the postponement of the national festival and provides opportunities for whānau and communities to foster and celebrate kapa haka within their rohe. The funding allocated through the Arts and Culture COVID Recovery Programme to support the 2021 national festival will instead support this programme of regional events.

Keep an eye on for details of forthcoming regional events.

Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Whātu will next host Te Matatini at Auckland's Eden Park from 23 to 26 February 2022.

Te Matatini ki te ao Pōhiri at Waitangi Park, Wellington, February 2019. 

Watch the above Ministry YouTube clip in support of Te Matatini 2017.

Te Matarae I Orehu performing at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2012.

To find out more about Te Matatini, view top kapa haka on show overseas in the above film clip which runs for 38 seconds.

These clips feature excerpts from performances but do not have any commentary.

Organisation Details

  • Chair – Selwyn Tanetoa Parata
  • Exective Director - Carl Ross

Contact Details

  • [email protected]
  • Tel (04) 385 2306
  • Postal Address -  PO Box 5455, Lambton Quay, Wellington 6149.

Te Matatini is governed by an Executive Committee who work alongside a National committee representing the 13 rohe ‘regional bodies’.

The Executive comprises of the Chair, four delegates elected by the Executive Committee and the delegate of the host region for the upcoming festival.

Related links

Te Matatini website


Updated on 9th June 2021