Looking back: Being kaitiaki: A response to contemporary dance - A Māori perspective


In this article I respond to Stephen Bradshaw's reprinted article in which he investigated significant issues in the development of Māori contemporary dance in the forty years prior to 2002 when the article was published. Bradshaw offered a personal perspective as practitioner and narrated some of the meetings between those involved in Māori and contemporary dance, specific wānanga in which Māori artists investigated culturally appropriate ways of using theatre dance arts, and discussing examples of cultural exchange. Bradshaw engaged with key issues and definitions relating to inter-cultural and intra-cultural exchange and offered an understanding of continuum Māori dance that was timely and insightful. My purpose in the article is to respond to Bradshaw's work as a current contemporary dance practitioner myself and to engage with how I interpret 'being kaitiaki'. I offer examples of my experiences in defining myself as a Māori contemporary dancer, in my activism and in my use of social media as a site for activism.


@ The University of Waikato