It was “organised mayhem” in Whangaparaoa School’s hall on September 18 when 300 kindergarten pupils, along with their teachers and parents, gathered to take part in a kapa haka festival called Haere Tahi (journey together).
Eight kindergartens, including Stanmore Bay, Orewa Beach and Whangaparaoa, took part, performing one or two items each: many lovely versions of songs such as ‘Piko Piko’ featured, along with poi and hakas.
At the end, the Kapa Haka crew from Whangaparaoa School did demonstrations of poi, taiaha and ti titorea.
The festival was organised by Whangaparaoa Kindergarten. Head teacher Wendy Simpson says she was inspired by the kapa haka event that is held annually at Red Beach school. Funding of $3000 to make Haere Tahi happen came from the Northern Auckland Kindergarden Association’s scholarship fund.
Kenny Halliday, general manager of the association, was alongside the stage to enjoy the show. He said that while some kindergartens already have kapa haka groups, others started them specifically spurred on by this event – this includes Orewa Beach Kindergarten, whose group was put together just one month before the show.
Kenny was impressed by the participation and enthusiasm of the students and said the association may be able to budget for it as an ongoing event.