They are all superb musicians and performers, revered for their artistry and Maori activism, at the forefront of a new generation of indigenous performers in New Zealand (Aotearoa), who have been commissioned by WOMAD Taranaki and its program director Emere Wano, to create new work together, mainly in te reo Maori (Maori language). They have performed together at festivals and events and shared each other's songs—this project takes them to a new level of collaboration.
This group of artists, and the songs they write, are concerned with environmental issues, particularly those that directly impact Maori lands and Aotearoa's water; Maori youth and threats from drugs, poverty, gangs; renewed pride in heritage and in traditions; and well as songs of love and connection. The melodies help give them a mainstream platform to tell their stories.
A singer-songwriter whose powerful, majestic voice captivates audiences worldwide, Maisey Rika moved from traditional Kapa Haka to a singing career, winning 9 Maori music awards to date. Horomona Horo, composer and cross-genre collaborator, shares instruments that are part of the Maori holistic culture of all life, birth, death and nature. Solo recording artist and composer of over 200 songs, Rob Ruha has a burning drive to expand the platforms for the voice of his indigenous nation, amplifying and celebrating uniquely Maori world-views.
Seth Haapu, of Maori/Tahitian descent, is an Auckland-based pianist, guitarist and singer, with a velvet voice and a soul for inventive melodies.
Together, they are Aoteroa’s Finest.
Maisey Rika, vocals, guitar
Horo Horomona - pūoro (Maori traditional instruments), vocals
Rob Ruha - guitar, vocals
Seth Haapu, keys, vocals
Troy Kingi - guitar, vocals
PASIFIKA ARTISTS NETWORK LLC | KAREN A. FISCHER, PRESIDENT | 1-808-283-7007 | KAREN@PASIFIKA-ARTISTS.COM