Te Aranga O Otene Hopa
Occupation: Kapa Haka Tutor/Performer, Māori Cultural Lead TupuToa, Future Director Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei Whai Rawa
What are the top three things on your bucket list?
1. Visit Gallipoli and see where our soldiers were all those years ago and pay my respects there.
2.Climb Machu Picchu and explore South America and all the neighbouring countries there.
3. Visit Raiatea to where it is said my Tupuna came from in the Pacific.
What advice would you give your 20 year-old self?
Just get stuck into what you are wanting to do. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Just be who you are and be unapologetic about it.
How do you stay motivated?
My whānau, my marae and my responsibilities to them. If I am succeeding in life, so are they!
If you didn’t need money, what would you do?
I would set up my own Whare Tapere (Māori Performing Arts Centre) adjacent to my marae and continue to share Kapa Haka with the world. Share my world view, the Māori world view with anyone and everyone wanting to see and experience the world I see and experience. Haramai tetahi āhua.
What is the secret to success?
Hard work, knowing who you are and being okay to explore the unknown. Be bold, don’t be afraid!
What is the worst mistake you’ve made and how did you fix it?
To assume you know everything you need to know about a person and sum them up in 2 minutes. Get to know them and build that whanaungatanga (relationship/connection) with them! Our tupuna have left us a great blueprint for how to do that!
What is your advice for people to fund their dream?
Be deliberate about funding your dream. It won’t just happen, you have to have a bit of skin in the game.
What is the best bit of advice, or quote, that resonates with you?
Ko te reo te mauri o te mana Māori.
The language is the life force of my Māori identity and culture.
Said by Sir James Henare, it reminds me of the importance of te reo Māori and inspires me to keep speaking te reo and keep sharing the reo. It is truly the doorway into the Māori world, the world of my ancestors.
What makes you feel alive?
Being Māori and sharing Kapa Haka, my culture with the world.
Tihei mauri ora!
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