cooks announce theme for 40th


A simple but expressive theme has been chosen for this year’s 40th Te Maeva Nui Festival.

“Te Maeva Nui o te Basileia, Celebrating a Nation,” will be the overall theme of the 2005 Te Maeva Nui which will mark 40 years of self-government.

“Being the 40th year we felt we needed a meaningful theme that conveys the spirit of the 40th Te Maeva Nui,” says Ministry of Cultural Development CEO Willie John.

Under that main theme will the sub-theme to help guide and inspire competing dance groups with their compositions.

The sub-theme is “Akararangi I Toku Tupuranga -- Celebrating My Heritage.”

The sub-theme has been defined into six categories for teams to work with.

q Peu Tupuna – Traditional Customs

q Porotiki – Politics

q Evangelia – Religion

q Kopu Tangata – Genealogies/Family Structure

q Reo Maori – Maori Language

q Tarekareka Tipoti -- Sports

Secretary of the Ministry of Cultural Development Sonny Williams explains that the former name of Constitution Celebrations was changed back around 1994 at the request of then prime minister, Sir Geoffrey Henry. “Government wanted a Maori translation for the Celebrations, something that would capture the essence of our annual festival and convey in our language that it is an event to celebrate self-governance and our Cook Islands culture.”

Te Maire Maeva Nui was first used, says Williams, “but this was a bit of tongue twister and could be confused with Te Maire Nui, the 1992 Pacific Arts Festival held in Rarotonga.”

“So we changed it to Te Maeva Nui and Cabinet endorsed it in 2001,” recalls Williams.

Williams says he also changed the concept of the Te Maeva Nui, with annual themes being based on clearly defined cultural themes for all teams to work with.

He says over the years these themes have changed to show the progression and development of Cook Islands culture captured in the original items performed by the teams. This began with the 2002 theme Te Kapuanga o Toku Enua e Toku Matakeinanga – The Origins of My Island and Tribal Heritage.”

“Over the years we have tried to catalogue all the performances and the korero by the teams have been preserved by the Ministry to show our history and also the cultural changes and developments that have taken place in our country.”

“So our 2005 overall theme of Te Maeva Nui o te Basileia, Celebrating a Nation’ expresses what is happening this 40th year of self-government.”

Further information: Flo Syme-Buchanan Media, Marketing & Promotions Ministry of Cultural Development Ph: 20713 Mob: 55944