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He Reo Tawhito
Season 1, Episode 3: A conversation with Dr Wayne Ngata

Mōteatea is a centuries-old tradition of chanted song-poetry; a great literary and musical art form that expresses the powerful portrayal of storytelling and is reflective of the emotional depths of a Māori world view. Its vast richness is yet to be fully understood. 

In these eleven episodes, over three series, hosted by Crystal Edwards, we hold conversations with some of the world’s leading experts on mōteatea and ask them: What exactly is mōteatea? How has it changed since colonisation? What issues does it face today?

He Reo Tawhito: Conversations about Mōteatea podcast

Season 1, Episode 3

Please note: This podcast is spoken in te reo Māori

“Ko te mōteatea o te ngākau, ko te māteatea o te ngākau.” — Dr Huirangi Waikerepuru

Dr Wayne Ngata is a strong supporter of the revitalisation of te reo Māori and education models underpinned by Māori processes. He is a specialist in Māori literature and a practitioner, composer, and advocate of Māori performing arts — particularly haka and mōteatea. In 2021, he was appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) for services to Māori and education.

In He Reo Tawhito, a conversation about Mōteatea with Dr Wayne Ngata, Wayne shares his perspective on mōteatea from Te Tairāwhiti (the Gisborne region of Aotearoa New Zealand), where mōteatea is flourishing. He speaks about the invaluable work of Tā Apirana Ngata and Pei Te Hurinui Jones who, over a period of forty years, collected and recorded hundreds of mōteatea, compiling them into the treasured four-volume series Ngā Mōteatea.

Wayne speaks in detail about his personal favourite mōteatea and provides a range of mōteatea examples from around the North Island. He shares his perspective on why mōteatea has survived throughout the ages and speaks about his personal experience as a composer of mōteatea today.  

Join Dr Wayne Ngata and host Crystal Edwards for this fascinating te reo Māori conversation about mōteatea.

Host: Crystal Edwards
Guest: Dr Wayne Ngata

Links & Resources
He oriori
Ka hura
Mangarara Takapau
Paikea (Karakia Whakakau)
Te Tangi a Rangiuia

Production team
Producers: Toni Huata & Roger Smith
Sound Engineer: Phil Brownlee
Research: Dr Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal
Production Assistance: Ngahuia Maniapoto, Kelly Mata, Nina Lesperance, Jonathan Engle, Alpana Chovhan
Marketing: Leoné Venter
Executive Producer: Diana Marsh

Special thanks to
Dr Wayne Ngata for He oriori
Dame Hinewehi Mohi, Dr Wayne Ngata and Ngāti Porou for Pōpō and Ka hura
Dr Wayne Ngata and Hauiti Tangi Tirarau for Mangarara Takapau
Te Kapa Haka o Whāngārā Mai Tawhiti for Paikea (Karakia Whakakau)
Hauiti Tangi Tirarau for Te Tangi a Rangiuia
Thanks to Adrian Wagner and Te Upoko o Te Ika 
Cover Art: Kennedy Kioa Toi Faimanifo of Manatoa Productions

This podcast is supported by funding from Creative New Zealand.

© Copyright Centre for New Zealand Music Trust