23 Feb 2018

Waka fleet opens New Zealand Festival

9:15 pm on 23 February 2018

A fleet of waka hourua have opened the NZ Festival on Wellington's waterfront tonight, telling the story of the explorer Kupe.

A fleet of waka hourua opened the NZ Festival on Wellington's waterfront.

A fleet of waka hourua opened the NZ Festival on Wellington's waterfront. Photo: RNZ / Richard Tindiller

The performance was inspired by the arrival of navigator and explorer Kupe to Aotearoa, and will feature more than 1000 kapa haka performers and a 250-strong choir.

The performers welcomed the four waka hourua that travelled from as far as Samoa to be part of the opening of the New Zealand Festival.

Twenty-thousand people gathered to watch the spectacle on a fine night in the capital.

No caption

Photo: RNZ / Ceinwen Curtis

No caption

Photo: RNZ / Ceinwen Curtis

No caption

Photo: Ceinwen Curtis

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs