Te Matatini - The many faces

Māori Performing Arts brings together people of all ages, all backgrounds, all beliefs, Māori and non-Māori alike, participants and observers. When I look, I see many faces, young and old
— Professor Wharehuia Milroy

It takes many people to bring life to Kapa Haka; performers, craftspeople, costume designers, composers, musicians, cooks, administrators, sponsors, whānau, tamariki, our audiences, and more.

Our name "Te Matatini" acknowledges all those people who bring the excitement and vibrancy of Kapa Haka to New Zealanders and our audiences overseas.




Te Matatini is an incorporated society. 

Our story began in 1972 when we were part of the Polynesian Festival. We grew in size and strength through the 1980s and 90s, and were known as ‘Aotearoa Traditional Māori Performing Arts  Society’. In 2004 we became Te Matatini Society Incorporated. 

As the official national organisation for Kapa Haka in New Zealand we…

  • Fund and support Kapa Haka events and shows
  • Send the best Kapa Haka overseas to represent Te Matatini and New Zealand at major events
  • Own and organise the Te Matatini National Kapa Haka Festival
  • Work with government, regional Kapa Haka committees and our strategic partners to promote Kapa Haka in New Zealand and overseas


Ki te whāngai, ki te whakatipu, ki te manaaki, i ngā mahi Kapa Haka kia puawai ki ōna taumata

To foster, develop and protect Kapa Haka in the pursuit of excellence.



Mā tini, mā mano ka rangatira a Kapa Haka 

Kapa Haka flourishes through the efforts of man.



To showcase our Kapa Haka communities in their regions, on national platforms, and the world stage.


Our core business funding is provided by the Ministry for Arts, Culture and Heritage.   This funding is then supplemented by tickets sales from our biennial Te Matatini National Kapa Haka Festival, government funding for special projects, one-off shows or events and festival sponsorship.