OKAREKA DANCE COMPANY

Mana Wahine

OKAREKA DANCE COMPANY Mana Wahine

source: okareka
AN ALL-FEMALE WORK BY OKAREKA DANCE COMPANY THAT DRAWS STRENGTH FROM TRADITIONAL MĀORI CULTURE TO ILLUSTRATE A TAPESTRY OF DANCE, THEATRE AND FILM.
Taane Mete, Taiaroa Royal and Malia Johnston have created a collage of powerful imagery that transcends space and time. Mana Wahine is a 70min performance that celebrates the essence of life and death. Drawing on traditional culture of song and dance, Tui Matira Ranapiri-Ransfield emanates her wisdom with Okareka Dance Company to create a vision of strength that empowers woman around the world.
Mana Wahine/Powerful Woman emulates the journey from creature to motherhood, life force to the spirit world, the honoring of mother earth and sky father.
Ancient Maori practices of karakia/prayer, song/waiata and mythology are weft throughout the performance to enhance cultural connection from Aotearoa New Zealand to the rest of the world. Okareka Dance Company continues to deliver productions that bind culture with dance in a contemporary context.
Premiered June/July 2014
“Mana Wahine is above all a rich fusion of choreography, music, tikanga Maori and performance practices, AV, lighting and performance design … enriched and enlivened by the dancing of five powerhouse performers.” Raewyn Whyte, Theatreview
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source: okareka
Formed in 2007, Okareka was established to fuse contemporary dance with indigenous Māori themes and other genres to create authentic, diverse works. Led by senior performers Taane Mete and Taiaroa Royal, Okareka has become one of New Zealand’s most sought after and prolific dance companies.
Okareka holds its provenance close to its heart. Through choreography, set design, and costume, the company strives to tell bold, spiritual stories that are of and from New Zealand. Through careful collaboration the company seeks to extend its creativity and its influence by engaging experienced artists from around the Globe – the sole driver – to create evocative, beautiful dance works that tell a story.
Okareka is a company guided by Māori beliefs. These beliefs are brought to its work and its audiences.
The next 5 years are very exciting for Okareka as it continues to grow and develop both creatively and strategically in areas of business, education and repertoire.
WHANAU (FAMILY)

Whether people are brought together by blood, or a similar intention, excellence is reached through group effort and energy, through collaboration and the sharing of dreams. The individual can only reach greatness through the efforts of the many.
MANA (HONOUR AND INTEGRITY)

Stay true to who you are and express yourself openly and honestly. Be proud of where you come from and treat those who have come before you with respect. Honor your teachers. Pass on your expertise. Work hard at what you do.
MATATAKI (CHALLENGE)

Seek to know and understand yourself. Search constantly for ways to grow and create opportunities for others to do the same. Do not settle for mediocrity. Be provocative. The judgment of others is not your concern.
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source: vimeo
Okareka (or – ka – rek – a)
Māori place name, Rotorua Lake District, New Zealand.
A young, vibrant contemporary dance company from New Zealand. Okareka reaches from its rich Maori heritage and contemporary expertise to create unique and moving dance compositions to inspire and provoke audiences around the world. Okareka’s experience is vast, naming New Zealand’s most renowned performers and choreographers as its own.
“Okareka Dance Company present a powerful fusion of contemporary dance and Maori muscle memory. Tai Royal and Taane Mete synthesised talents have created one of New Zealand’s most seductive slices of transgressive dance.” – Mark Summerville, Zoomslide