I saw the poster for Te Manahua in the window of the local ice cream parlor. A Maori Cultural Arts Competition? Right here at the Polynesian Cultural Center? I really have died and gone to heaven.
Nothing moves me like Maori music. There's a power in their voices unmatched by anything I've ever heard. They also get to throw sticks and swing things around at the end of a string, and instead of mom saying, "don't do that, you'll break something!" it's considered a cultural art.
This performance from the Poi-E competition on Friday night by Tongariro High School was my absolute favorite. Who would have thought you could do so much with a ball and a piece of string?
This morning I took my five children to the Pacific Theater to watch the 2010 Te Manahua. Excellent, excellent performances. Exciting hakas, graceful poi twirling, thrilling harmonies, I loved every minute. The concessions stand was selling New Zealand-style food too - oooh, that meat pie was to die for.
The last group to perform opened with a song about how La'ie is the eye of a needle. The threads of all cultures pass through this place. It is a village where all the tribes of the people dwell together in peace. After sharing in a day of beautiful Maori culture, I couldn't agree more.