May 11, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

Nga Taonga Whitiahua on Te Reo Channel

2 min read

A new series, screening on Maori Television, showcases century-old film footage from the New Zealand Film Archives Taonga Maori Collection.In the 26-part series Nga Taonga Whitiahua, special guests explain the background of the people and the events that feature on screen, with footage dating back to 1901.

We are talking to people who can add texture and colour to the mostly black-and-white silent films that we are seeing, says series producer Michele Bristow. This helps to give us a context of the people depicted in these very special films.

Upcoming episodes feature the 1940 Treaty of Waitangi celebrations, the construction of the Ngapuhi ceremonial waka, Ngatokimatawhaorua, early sound recordings of Te Reo Maori on film, as well as the oldest footage of tupuna Maori known to exist anywhere in the world.

Broadcaster and presenter Lawrence Wharerau, kairangahau for the Archive, presents the series. He has an extensive knowledge of early film and filmmakers in New Zealand.

Usually, when the Archive is accessed, it is to use these taonga as short clips, so it was a priority for both Maori Television and the Archive to show the footage in its entirety.

We are always looking for ways to reach and extend our audiences and give people the opportunity to engage with and enjoy the taonga we care for on behalf of whanau, hapu and the nation, says Lawrence. We are also excited by the series because it gives our kaitiaki an opportunity to talk about the films and the tupuna depicted in the images.

Nga Taonga Whitiahua screens on the Te Reo Channel on Mondays at 9.00pm and is repeated with subtitles on Maori Television on Wednesdays at 9.30pm.

* Many thanks to the Human Rights Commission Newsletter for this panui

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