Polyfest set to break records
The countdown is on for thousands of students around Auckland in the lead-up to this year’s ASB Polyfest.
Now in its 39th year, the world’s largest Maori and Pacific Island festival was officially launched last week at ASB’s head office in Auckland.
More than 9000 students from a record 62 schools are expected to perform over four days at the Manukau Sports Bowl – a huge growth from the inaugural festival in 1976, when just four schools took part.
It will be the second Polyfest organised by event director Theresa Howard, who performed at the event in 2001.
The former St Dominic’s College student says the festival teaches students a lot more than just per- formance skills. ‘‘ To learn of leadership, respect, discipline, hard work and whanau, a lead-up to an event like the ASB Polyfest can really shape an individual into a positive role model,’’ Ms Howard says.
She takes the most pride in seeing student performances come together after months of preparation and also seeing Polyfest grow.
‘‘I once took the stage in this event and to see how far it’s come, that’s the most rewarding part of it,’’ she says.
of community and sponsorship Mark Graham says the bank is pleased to support Polyfest.
‘‘We’re a bank that services the whole of the population so it’s important for us to demonstrate support of the community through events like the Polyfest.
‘‘We have been supporting this unique festival since 1985 and are proud to be part of celebrating Auckland’s cultural identity and heritage alongside so many diverse Kiwi cultures,’’ he says.
Go to auckland cityharbournews.co.nz and click on Latest Edition to see a video of the launch event.