The Māori screen production organisation, Ngā Aho Whakaari, celebrates 20 years of operation with a two-day hui and the inaugural Māori Screen Gala Ball & Awards.
Named TE POU IHIIHI – A moment to stabilize, to gather around something solid, look back and look forward, the hui will be at Waipapa Marae at Auckland University, on October 7 & 8. The hui will feature international and local guest speakers, interactive workshops, a pitching competition with a $5000 prize and the launch of the Ngā Aho Whakaari “Short Films Project”.
The inaugural Māori Screen Gala Ball & Awards on Saturday October 8 at the Stamford Plaza Hotel is a black-tie red carpet event with celebrity guests and the presentation of eight key awards to honour success in the screen industry.
Featured guest speaker Darlene Johnson was a guest at the first Ngā Aho Whakaari hui-a-tau 20 years ago. Johnson is an indigenous Australian director/actor whose films include award-winning BLUEY (Best Short Film at 2016 First Peoples Festival, Montreal) and THE REDFERN STORY (Best Documentary at 2015 ATOM Awards), and the documentary STOLEN GENERATIONS and a modern-day supernatural myth CROCODILE DREAMING.
Berlin-based New Zealander Maryanne Redpath, who heads the Generation section of the Berlin International Film Festival, will also attend as part of her worldwide search for films for the prestigious festival.
Māori Television CEO Paora Maxwell will deliver the keynote address, and a panel including Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell, broadcaster Willie Jackson and television presenter/te reo expert Scotty Morrison will discuss Te Mātāwai, the new entity leading the revitalisation of Te Reo Māori and how it will impact on Māori broadcasting.
A range of television makers will enter a pitching competition witnessed by programme commissioners from TVNZ, TV3 and Maori Television. They stand to win a $5000 award and the opportunity to have their programme commissioned and aired.
There is also a session titled “Celebrating Our Films” with Lee Tamahori, Cliff Curtis, Tearepa Kahi, Katie Wolfe and Tammy Davis.
Other highlights include Te Reo Māori scriptwriting with Tearepa Kahi, writer/director of box office hits POI E and MT ZION and award-winning short film TAUA; a taiohi (youth) panel, interactive sessions on a variety of topics and a display of the latest equipment and technology.
For the Ngā Aho Whakaari “Short Films Project”, writer Michael Bennett (MATARIKI, KAITANGATA TWIST, THE FACTORY) will encourage writers to pitch their short films to a panel of experienced producers & directors. Bennett will mentor three successful applicants and the best will be produced. Ngā Aho Whakaari is also seeking those keen to direct and produce drama. The short films will provide a unique opportunity for new directors and producers to develop their skills. Experienced directors and producers will be available to share information and experiences at the Hui-a-Tau.
The hui and Māori Screen Gala Ball & Awards are sponsored by: NZ Film Commission, Māori Television Service, Te Māngai Paho, Te Puni Kōkiri, NZ On Air, Park Road Post and South Pacific Pictures.
For Māori Screen Gala Ball & Awards tickets contact: email@example.com
Members can pay directly via the website. www.ngaahowhakaari.co.nz
ABOUT NGĀ AHO WHAKAARI – Celebrating 20 years
Ngā Aho Whakaari is the national representative body for Māori working in screen production including film, television, digital and gaming in New Zealand. Our members range from actors, directors and independent production companies to presenters, producers, technicians, writers and broadcasting students and educators.
Ngā Aho Whakaari, means the “strands of many visions” and encapsulates our representation of the many Māori who work within the industry, the diversity of our productions and our collective aspirations.
Ngā Aho Whakaari was established in 1996, after a series of hui called by Māori film and television practitioners concerned that Māori should be accurately represented in the development of Māori broadcasting by Government.
Many of the originators of Ngā Aho Whakaari were earlier involved with Te Manu Aute, which was an informal collective of Māori filmmakers that actively lobbied for stronger Māori representation in Government decision-making about Māori film making and broadcasting in the 1980’s.
Our core mahi is advocacy and lobbying but we do much more than that. We assist members on a day-to-day basis and provide platforms where our members can up-skill, network, access professionals who can help their advancement and, of course, help create their own work.
We've come from protesting throughout the 70's, 80's and 90's to seeing the establishment of our own Māori television channel in 2003. Today's CEO of MTS, Mr Paora Maxwell, was a founding member and Chair of Ngā Aho Whakaari. Another former chair Ms Whetu Fala and former board member Ms Rhonda Kite, are both current members of the Māori Television Service board. Both are experienced producers, so they can serve our members well.
We also have representation on Boards such as Te Putahi Paho (Maori Television electoral board) soon to be replaced by Te Mātāwai (the new Te Reo Māori Board) and previous Board members hold influential positions with our stakeholders.
We work with other industry guilds to provide quality workshops which our members have full access to. These include The Director's Guild, WIFT and The Writers Guild, who will be making an announcement at our Hui-a-tau on Friday 7th October.