The Ragged


The savages are coming to a theatre near you – if you live in the Hutt Valley, that is….

In partnership with St Bernards and St Orans Colleges, Te Rākau is proud to present The Ragged, at St Orans College, from 22nd-26th July 2014. Set in 1840, The Ragged follows the experiences of both Māori and Pākehā as they struggle to survive in 1840s New Zealand, and make sense of their relationship that has been newly forged by Te Tiriti o Waitangi. The Ragged was first performed in 2010, and is the first play from our underTOW series. This is a short season, so get your tickets quick from, and let the wonderfully keen and talented young cast take you on a journey about the birth of our capital city….


The Battalion – celebrating Ngāti Toa at Te Papa!


No lights, no entry fee, just good solid New Zealand theatre!

To celebrate the opening of “Whiti Te Rā! The story of Ngāti Toa Rangatira” at our national museum, Te Papa Tongarewa, Te Rākau will present 2 shows only of The Battalion, at 1pm on the 14th and 15th of June, 2014 at the Marae. On Sunday 15th between 3-5pm there will be pop-up open rehearsals of scenes from our next show The Ragged. Te Rākau is proud to be supporting Jim’s Iwi as they begin their 3 year residence at Te Papa, and look forward to working with Te Papa and Ngāti Toa in commemorating their epic story.

He mihimihi ki ngā kura tuatahi o Pōneke…

E whakawhetai ana te whānau o Te Rākau ki a koutou ngā Kura, ngā Pouako me ngā Akonga i whai wāhi ki tā mātou hōtaka Kapa Haka o tērā tau. Kāre e kore, ahakoa he wā poto, he wā tongarewa. Ki a koutou ngā tamariki: ahakoa nō hea, ahakoa ko wai, he rangatira mō āpōpō koutou. Nō reira, kaua koutou e wareware ko te reo rangatira me te mahi a te rēhia he taonga tuku iho mō ngā tamariki katoa o Aotearoa. Kia kaha, kia pukumahi, kia harikoa i ngā mahi katoa i te kura, arā, Tama tū, Tama ora, Tama noho, Tama mate! Mauri ora!


At the end of the school year, schools participate in a junior Kapa Haka Festival.
Wellington Junior Schools Kapa Haka 2013
Nepia and Kamaia Takuira-Mita deliver our schools Kapa Haka programme - Ka rawe e hoa mā!
St Bernards School (Brooklyn) perform at Owhiro Catchment 2013

I now declare Pūtahi Festival 2014 open – let the games begin!

Whiu! Last night, Te Rākau and Tawata warmed up the floor at Vic’s Studio 77 with the opening night of The Battalion, and preview of the beautiful ones. Mean as food and coffee from Dean’s Kai Cart, and a beautiful amphitheatre to hang out with guests, performers and whānau (family). A big mihi (thank you) to Victoria University for hosting us, and another mihi to our lovely audience – spread the word, Whānau. We’re performing for  1 week only. Door sales available, just roll on up – nō reira, kia tere – nau mai, haere mai!


Māori Battalion march to Victoria (University, that is)

battalionflyerputahiTe Rākau presents a moving story about friendship, loyalty, madness and redemption – seen through the eyes of a Battalion veteran, and relayed to his wayward young charges. Sent back to their Whānau in the ‘one cow town’ of Tamariri, George and Rimini aren’t interested in any of the locals or their family history – they just want to get back to the city.

It was the same for five young men in 1939. Drawn by the excitement of war, they run away to the army and join the 28th Māori Battalion. Thus begins their adventure of a lifetime, from their training in England to their first encounter with the enemy in Greece – to one fateful night in an olive grove in Crete.

Jim Moriarty directs a passionate and talented cast of young New Zealanders in a performance that will stir, inspire and educate audiences.

E neke, Pōneke – come on Wellington, get your marching boots on and join us at Studio 77, Victoria University, Wellington for the opening night of The Battalion.


The Battalion returns!


Te Rākau’s tribute to Te Hokowhitu-a-Tū (28th Māori Battalion) returns this February, in our inaugural Pūtahi Festival! The Battalion tells two stories: the first about five young men who swap 1930s rural New Zealand for a life of adventure and heartbreak, and the other about their descendants who face a very different war on the Home-front. The Battalion stars veteran actorJim Moriarty, and newcomers Vanessa Kumar (The Ragged), Sandy Milesic (Dog&Bone), and Matt Dussler (Dog&Bone). For more information about tickets and showtimes, check out


Pūtahi Festival 2014

This February head to Pūtahi Festival, for a week of alternative, indigenous theatre and live performance brought to you by Wellington’s only independent Māori theatre collective, Te Pūtahitanga-a-Te Rēhia*. Pūtahi Festival aims to celebrate the diversity of Te Ao Māori and the truth of our stories, with a mix of play readings, live music, hui, and theatre performances from emerging and established kaituhi, kaiwaiata and kaiwhakaari. Works include Tawata’s the beautiful ones (by Hone Kouka), Tikapa Productions’ Not in our Neighbourhood (by Jamie McCaskill), and Te Rākau’s flagship piece The Battalion (by Helen Pearse-Otene).

Pūtahi Festival runs from 25th February – 1st March at Studio 77, 77 Fairlie Terrace, Kelburn. For more information visit

Te Pūtahitanga-a-Te Rēhia is a collective of Wellington based independent Māori theatre practitioners. Pūtahi Festival is supported by our colleagues at Circa and Takirua Theatres, and has been made possible through the manaakitanga of VUW’s Theatre and Film Department. Tēnei te mihi nui ki a koutou e hoa mā…Ka rawe!

*The name Te Pūtahitanga-a-Te Rēhia was gifted by Hone Hurihanganui, and refers to the central place where our art forms can meet, unite, and create.