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To mark the 50 golden years, Te Matatini will produce an album, a book and a web series celebrating 50 years of kapa haka and the Festival. This has been a one-of-a-kind project that has been supported by a project team that includes kapa haka legends Robert Ruha, Tangiwai Ria and Trevor Maxwell to name a few. The release of all these products will be notified by Te Matatini at a later date via our social media platforms and through the Te Matatini website.


Fifty waiata from the past 50 years of Te Matatini Festivals:

  • Te Matatoa – 24 waiata selected by ngā Toa Whakaihuwaka of each of the last 24 festivals, the original audio will be remastered;

  • Te Matakāinga – 13 waiata from each of the 13 Te Matatini rohe will be re-recorded by a select group of kaihaka from across the motu in kapa haka format;

  • Te Matakōkiri – 12 waiata from across the 50 years of the Festival will be selected and re-recorded in production format with input and feedback from Te Matatini audiences;

  • A Festival Theme Song for Te Matatini Herenga Waka Herenga Tangata National Kapa Haka Festival 2023

Web-series and Documentary:

Te Matatini has partnered with Māori Television to produce a 50-episode web series, providing background stories to each of the waiata that features on the album. The web series will also capture the project journey and interview key people involved in Te Matatini since 1972. Two x 1-hour documentaries will capture the actuality of the Te Matatini 50 year project and the evolution of kapa haka since 1972.


The publishing of a book that captures memoirs from key people involved in the Festivals, from 1972 to now. A chapter-by-chapter recollection of each Festival since 1972, through the eyes of key talent. Te Matatini has partnered with Huia Publishers as co-publishers of the book. An expert team of researchers, writers and transcribers have been assembled to assist in the drafting of the manuscript. Te Matatini is working together with Alexander Turnbull Library on accessing archival images from the earlier Festivals, from the 1980s and 1990s.

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