A book on the Māori performing arts has earned AUT University’s National Māori Language Institute, Te Ipukarea, a first-time win in the Copyright Licensing New Zealand (CLNZ) Publishing Awards.
Judged a joint winner in the ‘Best Resource in Higher Education Publishing’ category, Kia Rōnaki -The Māori Performing Arts is a collection of 25 essays written by academic staff and postgraduate students from Te Ara Poutama – the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Development at AUT University.
The book brings together the expertise of a range of performance artists and academics, consolidating their knowledge in a comprehensive single volume that will be relevant to all those interested in the Māori performing arts. It was edited by AUT University’s Professor Tania Ka’ai, Professor John Moorfield and Dr Rachael Ka’ai-Mahuta, and published by Pearson Education New Zealand in 2013.
Professor Tania Ka’ai says it is a great honour for Te Ipukarea to have Kia Rōnaki placed first equal.
“Most importantly this award does two things: it affirms the significance and importance of Māori knowledge in relation to the wide spectrum that constitutes the Māori performing arts; and it acknowledges the scholarship of the authors and their respective fields,” explains Professor Ka’ai.
The concept behind the book emerged as a result of a Symposium on the Māori Performing Arts in 2010, hosted by Te Ipukarea.
“It was inspired by the fact that over the last thirty years there has been an explosion of interest in the Māori performing arts.
“However, until now, there has been no general book written about the Māori performing arts by Māori authors and exponents of the various genres, in either English or te reo Māori.”
Half of the chapters in Kia Rōnaki are written in te reo Māori and the other half in English.
“For the benefit of readers who do not understand the language, there are also English summaries in the introduction to the volume,” says Professor Ka’ai.
Professor John Moorfield adds that for some of the postgraduate students whose work features in Kia Rōnaki, this was a great opportunity for their work to be published for the very first time.
“We were also fortunate that national experts in particular aspects of the Māori performing arts agreed to contribute to the book, namely; Poia Rewi, Pou Temara, Wayne Ngata, Tonga Karena, Te Rita Papesch, Te Ahukaramu Charles Royal, Huirangi Waikerepuru, Richard Nunns, and Rangi Matāmua,” says Professor Moorfield.
Te Ara Poutama staff and postgraduate students whose work features in the book include Professors Tania Ka’ai and John Moorfield; Senior Lecturers, Dr Rachael Ka’ai-Mahuta and Dr Dean Mahuta; Te Ipukarea Adjunct Professors James Wharehuia Milroy and Timoti Kāretu; Associate Professor Hinematau McNeill; Lecturer, Valance Smith; PhD students, Sandy Hata and Hana ORegan; Master of Arts students Ngarongoa Lentfer and Gloria Taituha; and Master of Arts graduates Jacqueline McRae-Tarei and May Te Pou.