Sis­ters make moves to brighten fes­ti­val

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By LAURA MCLEAY

Dressed up in their bright coloured leis, bells and hula skirts – the Ta­funa sis­ters are ready to dance.

Leti, 15, and Gabriella, 9, will be per­form­ing a tra­di­tional Ton­gan hula dance at the Mid Win­ter Christ­mas Fes­ti­val in Mata­mata this week­end.

The fes­ti­val put to­gether by the Pohlen Hos­pi­tal and Child Cancer Char­ity will be held from Thurs­day July 7 to Satur­day July 9 at the Mata­mata Bi­ble Church.

Per­for­mances, en­ter­tain­ment, cof­fee and crafts will all be a part of the fes­ti­val. Leti, who at­tends Mata­mata Col­lege and Gabriella who at­tends Mata­mata Pri­mary School, moved to Mata­mata from Dunedin with their fam­ily only last year but are al­ready mak­ing their mark in the town.

‘‘We like do­ing dance to ex­press our- selves. Let­ting the au­di­ence know what we do and shar­ing a bit of our cul­ture,’’ Leti said. ‘‘The hula, which in­volves tra­di­tional Ton­gan and Samoan moves, is a rel­a­tively fast is­land dance.’’

They have per­formed at a num­ber of events in­clud­ing the Union Parish Church ser­vices and Leti won Mata­mata Col­lege’s an­nual tal­ent quest for her per­for­mance ear­lier this year.

Not only do the sis­ters dance, they sing, play mu­si­cal in­stru­ments and are in­volved in sport teams. Gabriella plays net­ball for the Mata­mata Green team and Leti plays se­nior girls’ bas­ket­ball.

Leti said they both love to per­form and will be dancing on Thurs­day night at 7pm.

Gabriella is also per­form­ing at the Mid Win­ter Christ­mas Fes­ti­val on Thurs­day as part of the Mata­mata Pri­mary school band, Kids for Kids and ka­pa­haka group.

Leti and Gabriella Ta­funa will be per­form­ing the hula at the Mid Win­ter Christ­mas Fes­ti­val this week­end.

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