Wairoa Maori Film Festival Hospitality

Arrived in Wairoa after dark, and met the festival organiser Leo Kozoil at the Nuhaka Marae.  He kindly offered to show me where I was staying back about 10 klms along the road at the Morere Hot Springs.  Thankfully I followed him, and despite trepidation about the possible rising waters in the creek took my little car up the sandy track to a lovely paddock where a number of stand alone cabins had been constructed.  Very cosy. I went back to the marae that evening and met lots of new people, had a kai, watched some fantastic short films in the spacious and beautiful Nuhaka marae, voted on said films and drove myself back to the whareiti for a good nights sleep. In the morning, I crossed the stream on the very exciting swing bridge to the roadside cafe, had a bite and headed to the Marae for our Russian Snark screening.

The screening of Russian Snark went really well with good attendance and the Q & A had lots of really interesting questions and perspectives shared afterwards.  The crowd really seemed to enjoy  our film and the ideas it communicated.  Some of the audience have since recommended the film to theaters in their areas which is really cool.

More kai, and more films that day and then a drive around the incredibly wild and beautiful Mahia Peninsula, coming back to watch Katie Wolfe’s thought provoking films This is Her and  Nights in the Gardens of Spain.  Awards ceremonies followed with much aroha and some lovely awards bestowed on the filmmakers at our table, and of course some great kai!.  The kareoke was choice as well!

Sunday morning it was a trip to the Morere Hot Pools for a fantastic walk through the bush, lots of beautiful native birds, oxygen and a soothing hot soak in the pools.  Heaven! Then back to the marae for a kai and a chance to see Hook, Line and Sinker, and another film I produced - Hugh and Heke. Lots of laughter and  support for this film too, which stars Pete Smith and Geoff Dolan. More kai – (what a festival – everything is so close and intimate and you will never go hungry)  the ladies in the whare kai never stopped getting the next meal prepared…great work ladies!  And my last meal with them was one of my personal marae cuisine favourites – mutton birds…Yum – what a treat!

Back to my whareiti for a moemoe before getting up super early to drive back to Gisborne for my 6:40am flight to Auckland.  Leo had selcted Hugh and Heke for the Matariki Festival film screenings so if you want to see it, the free programme is here:

Matariki Festival Marae Film programme:

Makaurau Marae, 8 Ruaiti Road, Ihumatao, Mangere, Manukau City

  • Friday 24 June, 7pm Rangatahi Shorts 2011, 8.30pm Matariki
  • Saturday 25 June, 6pm Rangatahi Shorts 2011, 7.30pm Hugh and Heke

Te Mahurehure Marae, Premier Avenue, Pt Chevalier, Auckland

  • Friday 1 July, 7pm Rangatahi Shorts 2011, 8.30pm Matariki

Awataha Marae, 58 Akoranga Drive, Northcote, North Shore City

  • Saturday 18 June, 6pm Rangatahi Shorts 2011, 7.30pm Hugh and Heke




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