Chairman of Te Kopapa Reo Maori George Paniani led discussions on the pe‘e that are crafted specifically for the Ariki on Rarotonga, on the first day of the Epetoma o te Reo Maori (Maori language week) workshop yesterday.
There are pe‘e designed for distinctive occasions such as welcome ceremonies, funerals and investitures.
It was also noted by Paniani that there are those who will teach others a pe‘e and those who won’t because they may prefer to keep what they know.
Rangatira Pa Remuera of Puaikura Iro Rangi believes, “the pe‘e should be taught in the schools to our young children, our new generation so they can learn.”
“Let’s share what we know, to keep our oral history alive and well when we are gone,” said Rangi.
Another observation was that not only should this be taught at the schools, but also in the homes; and parents also need to make more of an effort to help their kids learn their culture.
A “karakia” is a prayer type of chant to thank the Gods of our ancestors or to ask for protection (but not limited to this).
The “eva” is a mourning or lament for someone and may sound like wailing or soft chanting. Types of eva are eva tapora, eva purotu, eva toki and eva ta.
Iri‘iri is used during an introduction, usually when one is sharing their lineage (where you are from, genealogy etc); usually the main purpose is to identify yourself; there would be no warfare because you may have come from the same tribe.
The Tateni is a warfare chant, it can also uplift someone – usually a chief.
This morning from 9am, the Southern group islands pe’e will be discussed at the Sinai Hall.
Tangianau Tuaputa will present on the mire, nakunaku and eva, and Henrica Wilson will describe the tau amu and patukurunga.