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Taku Wana - The Enduring Spirit

for two mezzo sopranos, Kai-karanga, taonga puoro, flute/piccolo, bodhran and string quartet

Year:  2002   ·  Duration:  37m

Year:  2002
Duration:  37m

Composer:   Helen Fisher

Films, Audio & Samples

Sample Score

Sample: Pages 8, 12, 16, 23, 26, 36 and 40

See details ➔
Sample Score

Sample: First page of movements 1-6, 8-9.

See details ➔


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This chamber work, composed in 2002, is based on the music drama of the same title, with music by Helen Fisher, Maori composition by Wi Kuki Kaa and lyrics by Lauris Edmond. This shorter work for two sopranos, kai-karanga, string quartet, flute, bodhran and Maori instruments was produced for a CD on the Atoll label (ACD 203). This work focuses on some Maori and Pakeha women's stories surrounding the events of the 1843 Wairau tragedy. These are stories of compassion, which have a resonance for New Zealand today, showing a way forward for reconciliation and racial harmony.

Difficulty note

One of the mezzo sopranos needs to be familiar with performing Maori waiata.

Contents note

I. Karanga
II. Ma Te Aroha
III. Tau Ana Te Haeata
IV. The Gift
V. NZ Co.
VI. O Little One
VII. He Moteatea Ukaipo: A Waiata Tangi for the Land
VIII. Wairau Lament
IX. Meditation
X. A New Garment
XI. Kokiritia

Text note

Lyrics by Lauris Edmond, Maori Composition by Wi Kuki Kaa

Performance history

10 Jul 2002: Performed by Linden Loader, April-Marie Neho (mezzo-sopranos), Richard Nunns (Maori instruments), Bridget Douglas (flute) and the Newvine String Quartet; Brierley Theatre, Wellington College

Performed by April-Marie Neho and Linden Loader (mezzo soprano), Jo-Anne Ani Robinson (kai-karanga/narrator), Richard Nunns (taonga puoro), Nevine String Quartet, Kirstin Eade (flute/picc.), Sean Kelly (bodhran), conducted by Owen Clarke in 2003

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