Save the last dance for me

Friday 23 August 2019 | Written by Melina Etches | Published in Entertainment


Save the last dance for me
Harry Tauei Napa with his second wife Pauline Scott in later years, inducted into the Music Hall of Fame. 15090118

Those keen on old-fashioned island waltz dances to a live band are in for a treat with the Marua’ia’i competition tomorrow.

Staged at the Tupapa Centre, the competition has taken on the name Marua’ia’i from the original popular dance club of the same name formerly owned by Harry and Maria Napa in partnership with Joe and Tita Browne.

The original nightclub was the realisation of a dream after the Napas visited Moorea, Tahiti in the 1960s.

They returned home to Rarotonga, inspired by the social scene of Tahiti and the beautiful locations and community of the Cook Islands.

Motivated, they partnered up with the Brownes and opened the original non-alcoholic Marua’ia’i in 1966. The popular venue immediately became a hit, filling up each night it opened with live band.

The new Marua’ia’i event is hoping to become an annual event with proceeds going to charity.

Tahitian band “Varua Sound” will be playing Tahitian and European waltz songs.

“We wanted to hold an old-fashioned dance, for the tasteful and the nostalgic,” says one of the organisers.

The Marua’ia’i is a fundraiser organised by supporters of James Talbot’s Creative Trail, with all proceeds going to the Creative Centre.

“We loved what James did to fundraise for the Creative Centre, so we thought, to support him and the Creative Centre, why not make the dance a fundraiser and add to the funds he raised?”

The adults-only night will include prizes for Best Dressed Couple and Best Island Waltz. “We also want to honour the memory of the late Harry Napa.”

Tickets are $50 at the door or can be bought in advance for $35 from phone 81899.