'E Ara e Mara' radio show aims to spread laughter during the pandemic

By Whatitiri Te Wake

They're a dynamic trio with a mission to start everyone's day with a good laugh on their breakfast show on Ngāti Hine FM

And in the light of Covid-19, they're committed to ensuring whānau have an option of receiving the messaging in a fun way.

It’s a radio-breakfast show with a punch.

“The E ara e Mara show is all about wake up - wake up te roro (brain), wake up the nono (backside),” radio host Luke Bird says. “It's a fun-filled breakfast radio show to make people feel good in the morning, laugh in the morning, to get you started on a positive.

“The morning show is about having a laugh, a sing and being happy,” co-host Marcia Hopa says. 

Māori humour

Te reo Māori is a main part of the show, to help learners, no matter the proficiency, she says.

“It’s a safe space for those in the know and those who aren’t. We encourage everyone to share their thoughts, analyse them and hopefully get some kind of understanding.”

Humour plays a big role. Radio host Phoenix Ruka says the show provides a platform to harness Māori humour, something he says isn't widely heard on the airwaves.

“The goal was for us to share our Māori humour because there are a lot of interpretations of what Māori humour should look like from non-Māori places. We just wanted a space to be able to be authentically us and grass-roots.”

Bird is an entertainer, MC and TV show host. He says that while the industry has taken a hit during lockdown, it’s allowed him to explore other skills in radio. 

Fingers in many pies

“I'm out there hosting events around the country, singing events from the country and hosting TV around the country. In saying that though, the entertainment industry has been hammered really hard.”  

He says the creative side of what he does has picked up, so he’s on the radio every day in the morning.

“ I'm also hosting some television guests for another company. It's about being creative as a creative. You have to get your fingers in lots of pies and make it work.”

And harnessing their skills and synergy to ensure that everyone's day starts off on a good note.