Story: Māori composers – ngā kaitito waiata

Te Rauparaha

The famed 'Ka mate' haka, well known for being performed before rugby games, was composed by Ngāti Toa chief Te Rauparaha as he hid from pursuers on an island in Lake Rotoaira. He was concealed in a kūmara (sweet potato) pit, with the local chief’s wife squatting above him.

Listen to a Roadside Story about Lake Rotoaira and the origins of the haka. Roadside Stories is a series of audio guides to places around New Zealand.

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Archival audio sourced from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives. Sound files may not be reused without permission from Radio New Zealand Sound Archives (Reference number T370).

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How to cite this page:

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, 'Māori composers – ngā kaitito waiata - Traditions of composing', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/interactive/44268/te-rauparaha (accessed 14 November 2019)

Story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, published 22 Oct 2014