There have been two moments recently where students from our St Mary’s College have, quite literally, taken my breath away – the Kapa Haka regional competitions in Otaki and the Tu Tangata celebrations held last night at the Michael Fowler Centre.
Nine of our students performed in the combined St Patrick’s, St Catherine’s and St Mary’s Colleges’ group, Ngā Maioha o Te Rangikauia in the esteemed regional competition for Kapa Haka. The breath-taking entrance of the group, the precision of the performance, the unity, the skills of movement and use of poi, the beauty in the spirit of the singing and the pride that shone on every face was an emotional experience for whanau watching and for whanau who had walked the journey through long months of preparation, supporting the students with kai, transport and fundraising.
It has been a similar journey for the students preparing for Tu Tangata. Student-led and student-choreographed with strong support from family and staff, the performance of song and movement by the SMC SOA group was stunning. As the lights came up to reveal our girls in the beautiful costumes th at so enhanced their performance, there was a moment of absolute realisation that all the hours of hard work had been worth every moment. Tu Tangata means to “stand tall”. To see our young women standing tall with immense dignity and pride in their culture and in the sisterhood of shared cultural appreciation, was a blessing. Our student group were especially chosen by the Komiti to present last in the group of performances. This is a position of honour at the Tu Tangata festival and well deserved.
Well done to all our girls in the Kapa Haka regionals and in the Tu Tangata festival. You have brought great joy to our College through your hard work and determination to succeed.
Here’s the link of the official video from this years Tu Tangata festival. Our St Mary’s performance begins at 2:53:20.