Kia ora koutou

We are busy developing a new piece of modern Māori theatrical re-telling of history with award-winning songwriter, musician and beat-maker Mara TK, and acclaimed theatre practitioner Tola Newbery.

This two person show Poropiti is a series of vignettes traversing different points in Māori history; from utopian visions of a pre-European Aotearoa, to the emergence of the Māori prophetic movements, including that of T W Ratana; to meditations on current day capitalist dystopia. The show incorporates physical-theatre, choreography and live music, and brings innovative theatre practitioner Tola Newbery, and the acclaimed voice and musical presence of Mara TK into challenging multi-disciplinary roles on stage; roles that evoke the surreal and avant-garde as well as deep aspects from the their own indigenous history. It’s a meditation on Māori history, hope and spirituality.

“Told in movement, song, sound and theatrical lyricism, it is a beautiful surrealist duet.” Tama Waipara, Auckland Festival.

“Poropiti is imbued with a profound sense of grace and dignity, … a fascinating and hypnotic show” Erin Harrington – Theatreview.

NEWS UPDATE: April 2017: Poropiti will have its debut season June 20-24 2017 during Auckland Matariki Festival at Basement Theatre. View event details here.

Festival shows 2017:
Taranaki Arts Festival TAF 23rd August
Christchurch Arts Festival CAF 8-9 September

Poropiti was also chosen to showcase at the Auckland Arts Festival 2017 in the RAW season.

The video below shows development at Putahi Festival 2017 in Wellington.

Mara’s physical-theatre piece called The Collective Prophet (early iteration of this show) premiered in New Zealand’s most prestigious art gallery in the nations capital at City Gallery Wellington and utilised choreographed movement and costuming set to Mara’s songs;

incorporating physical theatre is a way of adding another dimension to my music performances, I’ve added another conceptual layer – in this case one that rejects the neo-liberal emphasis on the individual, and the western idea of self containment.”

This work Poropiti had a work in progress presentation at PANNZ at 9am Wednesday March 2nd 2016 in Wellington New Zealand.  Post that pitch we have received 7 expressions of interest from New Zealand festivals and major venues so far.
The PANNZ producer profile is here.

This work will help to educate and empower urban Māori about vitally important historical Māori figures, and give them cause for re-questioning both their own cultural identity, and also the fractured nature of their relationship with the British Crown.
We intend to produce a work that pushes the boundaries of Toi Māori, involving cross-disciplinary practice, and experimentation in the areas of avant-garde aesthetic traditions. In this way we will draw on international experience and influences to embed universal themes within the work. We aim to increase the prospective audience for Urban Māori art, and inspire fellow practitioners in aspiring to innovation, cross-arts and revisionist work. We believe this will increase the cultural competency of both audience and practitioner, and contribute to innovation and stronger voices within Māori arts.