National Waiata Maori Music Awards held in Hastings on Friday night seek to develop, encourage and honour the achievements of traditional and contemporary musical compositions and performances.
There are seven categories, including best Maori traditional album; best rap, hip hop or rhythm and blues album; and best pop album.
Maori male and female solo artists are also recognised, along with the best Maori song and songwriter.
The awards are part of the two-day Maori Music Expo and the Te Koanga Fashion Show, which started on Thursday at the Hawke's Bay Opera House.
Several music and fashion competitions and workshops are being held.
Successful Maori musicians and performers at the event include aipara singer Majic Paora - who'll preview her debut album Hometown - Auckland dancer Justin Haiu, American-based singer Jess Harlen, and another singer Te Huaki Puanaki.