Te Matatini executive director Darrin Apanui yesterday confirmed the festival, to be held at the Rotorua International Stadium, will run from February 20 to 24, 2013.
The biennial festival was held in Gisborne earlier this year with Te Arawa’s Te Mataarae i Orehu winning the competition.
Te Arawa’s Ngati Rangiwewehi also made the final nine. Forty-two kapa haka groups from throughout New Zealand and Australia performed at the event. A similar number of teams are expected at the 2013 event.
Te Matatini 2013 festival director Monty Morrison said Rotorua could expect the biggest and brightest festival to date with more than 25,000 people expected to come to Rotorua for the five days.
“With the dates confirmed we can now look forward to getting into the planning stage,” he said.
“We want the whole community to come together for this event.”
Mr Morrison said the organising committee could now focus on producing an event that would promote Maori culture, not just in New Zealand, but around the world.
“It’s a very exciting time for us and we hope Rotorua gets behind the event and turns out in huge numbers to celebrate the culture of this country.”