Next generation of storytellers
A first time entrant to a prestigious Ma¯ori speech competition has walked away with a top accolade.
Marlborough Girls’ College student Te Ao Marama Nepia entered the regional round of a secondary school Ma¯ori speech competition.
Alongside fellow student Jemma Hart, the talented orator impressed judges at the Nga¯ Manu Ko¯rero speech competition in Richmond and both took home trophies.
Nepia will now go on to represent the top of the south at the National Nga¯ Manu Korero competition to be held in Houhoupiko, Gisborne later this year.
It is the first time a Marlborough Girls’ College student has won the Willie Luke Memorial Trophy in the junior section at the competition which took place at the end of last month.
Year 9 student Nepia (Nga¯ti Apa ki te Ra¯To¯, Rangita¯ne, Nga¯ti Kuia, Tu¯wharetoa) spoke on the topic, ‘‘ Ma¯ku ano to¯ku ao e waihanga (I will build my own world)’’ using examples of her tı¯puna, and how they had forged their own paths.
Hart (Nga¯ti Porou, Te Wha¯nau-A-Apanui), who is in her final year, won the Hine Takoto Wai Trophy in the Korimako – Impromptu Senior section at the event.
She also brought home the Te Riu Louisa Stafford Trophy for entering both the Korimako and Pei Te Hurunui sections.
Marlborough Boys’ College student Lucas Baker (Nga¯ti Apa ki te Ra¯ To¯, Nga¯ti Kuia, Rangitane) also impressed, placing third in the Senior Eng- lish section. Marlborough Girls’ College te reo kaiako Louisa King said the students had put in the hard work and impressed on stage in front of a crowd of about 200 people. ‘‘Students of Marlborough Boys’ and Girls’ colleges represented Marlborough with pride and poise. Our ko¯hine carried the mana of their school very well and should be proud of their efforts,’’ she says.
The taonga brought back from the regional competition were welcomed onto Omaka Marae in Blenheim last week with a po¯whiri attended by college students, kaiako and young rangatahi, helping to inspire the next generation of te reo speakers.
Nga¯ti Apa ki te Ra¯ To¯ cultural advisor Kiley Nepia says the wins at the Manu Ko¯rero regional level were a great achievement
‘‘This is how their legacy continues,
‘‘These young people are the next generation of storytellers,’’ he says.
Marlborough Girls’ College students Te Ao Marama Nepia, left, and Jemma Hart with taonga brought back from the regional Nga Manu Korero Maori speech competition. Marlborough Girls' College te reo kaiako Louisa King