ONE:The Earth Rises tells the history of Manukau through dance

By Tema Hemi

ONE - The Earth Rises is a highly entertaining dance show that is set firmly in Manukau. It was created by award-winning dance choreographer and Māori advocate Moss Patterson of Ngāti Tuwharetoa and he's combined Māori, Polynesian and Chinese cultures. 

This show comprises narratives, rhythms, traditional and contemporary dances which tell the history of Manukau.

Patterson says, "Our ONE kaupapa is about embodying these beautiful stories which exist in and around the Manukau rohe, particular place names and one of the inspirations behind ONE was all these amazing significant sites that we drive past or we walk past every single day and most of Aotearoa don't even know they even exist."

Over 50 professional dancers from TOHU Dance Theatre, Ngā Tapuwae College, Unitec, and James Cook High School are part of the production.

Rehearsal Director Te Arahi Easton says, "In my opinion its an opportunity for a collection of people to come together and work with creatives inside a contemporary dance world /or realm and have a background of skills, knowledge and technique embedded what we find as a culture one of the best ways of learning dance.

The show utilises live sand art by artist Marcus Winter and has a visual element combined with the sweet harmonies of The Auckland Chinese Philharmonic Choir.

Patterson also says, "The philosophy behind the artistic elements essentially is about bringing highly skilled professional artist and surrounding our younger artist, our rangatahi our teina, surrounding them with a whole lot of support and manāki.

Funding for the production has come from Creative New Zealand and the Vodafone Events Centre. 

Patterson says in closing, "Our kaupapa ONE has been a collaboration between Creative New Zealand with their creative diversity fund and the great whānau here at the Vodafone Event Centre, so it's been a collaboration of two organisations coming together to support a work of art."

ONE: The Earth Rises will feature at the BNZ Theatre, Vodafone Events Centre on Wednesday 3 October from 7.30pm.