Sunday News

‘I loved Kura before even doing the show’

- – Sarah Catherall

Aged 21, Aki Munroe has already achieved two of her goals – to be chosen to act in a feature film, and to star in Kura, the Papakura-set comedy which is trending on TVNZ.

She can’t release the details of her first feature film, apart from to say that she began rehearsing in January and she’s excited and proud to be part of the New Zealand production.

What she can talk about though, is her role in Kura – which has had 1.8 million streams on TVNZ+. Kura released its third season in January and Munroe acts as Po, a young woman who meets the lead character, Billy.

‘‘I’m excited for people to see what happens. I loved Kura before even doing the show.’’

Munroe has been acting since she was a young girl, when she grew up on the North Shore with her Mā ori father and Pā kehā mother. She also loved to sing, and would often perform with her family.

Speaking te reo is another passion – she went to kohanga reo and was in bilingual units at her successive schools.

After making her screen debut in Shortland Street when she was just 17 (she guested as Rangimarie Rameka, the daughter of Te Rongopai Rameka played by Kim Garrett), she was a natural choice to feature in the web series Ahikā roa – a bilingual drama series which follows the trials and tribulatio­ns of urban friends – which is in now in its third season.

She has been a recurring lead in two seasons since. ‘‘People watch the show and they tell me it makes them want to pick up their te reo again, which always makes me feel good,’’ she says.

‘‘Growing up half-caste, there wasn’t a lot of people I saw that were half-caste who were put in specific roles. I knew that I’d have an impact on younger people. I hope that people will see that there is representa­tion and connect with me.’’

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