Ariana Tikao


The last TEDx event in Christchurch started off in an inspirational way with a rousing performance. TEDxEQChCh will be no exception and e’re excited to announce that Ariana Tikao will be performing a song for us all. We invited Tikao to explain the genesis of her song to us:

"I have recently written a song about moving beyond the darkness, into the light, which draws upon the theme of the Maori Creation story, which features the gods making a conscious decision to move their parents apart "the gods they moved heaven and earth, to enable light to birth" and I think this is a perfect metaphor for what we face right now. Our world has recently been shaken, not from our own making, but the decisions we face now for the future are ours to grasp. The song also relates to the Christian Creation story which also talks about light, "let there be light" which can also be a metaphor for "understanding". In the Maori language, "marama" is light, and "maramatanga" or the state of being in the light, is understanding.
The song I am going to perform is the title track of my latest solo album, Tuia. The words in Tuia, are an excerpt from a tauparapara and whaikorero which is a formal part of Maori speechmaking, an ancient artform, where the (generally male) speaker recites whakapapa, incantations, and with his very words he puts things right in the world, everything is brought together in a spiritual sense, and then is put back into their proper place. Stitched above, stitched below, stitched within, stitched without. The living to the living, the dead to the dead.
Ruaimoko is the god of earthquakes and volcanoes. He is generally known as Papatuanuku's unborn child. Some say he is in the underworld and when he walks causes earthquakes. After experiencing the recent earthquakes and aftershocks, I think there is a strong link between earthquakes and birth or contractions. In the same way that you can feel most aftershocks coming on, like a rumbling or rippling under the earth, contractions during birth are just like this too. I think this is why Ruaimoko is the unborn child still in the earth mother's womb. Earthquakes in the Shaky isles are a part of life, and so it makes sense that we have a character who personifies the phenomenon. We were all shaken up by them, some more so than others, and many have lost lives and loved ones by these quakes. When I sing at TEDxEQChCh I will be thinking of all of this, and remembering those who have been lost, but also thinking of the future that lies ahead of us and our children, and our children's children."

We can’t think of a more appropriate performance to begin our TEDxEQChCh experience and thank Tikao for her involvement.