Following a sold out debut season    |    Showing May 18-20 at Auckland’s Bruce Mason Centre
An extraordinary true story of courage, loss & Hope
“This was a story I wasn’t aware of. It shared a controversial topic in a way that was accessible for the diverse audience. I cried, I laughed and I wanted more!”
“Heart wrenching”
”It is such a powerful production it should be shown all over the Whenua, to grow some understanding of our history“
“The music really brought the story alive. Heart rending tunes, searing guitar solos, soulful harmonies … there was jazz and rock, but also folk tunes and anthems; the kind of variety and energy that makes for great musical theatre!“
”Fantastic show that all New Zealand students should see in order to learn about our history. My students are still talking about it and say it was the highlight of their year… sincere praise indeed!“
An extraordinary true story of courage, loss & Hope
“This was a story I wasn’t aware of. I cried, I laughed and I wanted more!”
“Heart wrenching”
”A powerful story that should be shown all over the Whenua“
The Way of the Raukura logo

Showing May 18-20 at Auckland’s Bruce Mason Centre

On Guy Fawkes Day 1881…

1,600 soldiers and volunteers marched on a flourishing, peaceful village that had become a haven for dispossessed Māori. Led by Native Affairs Minister John Bryce, an overwhelming use of force was considered necessary to solve ‘The West Coast Problem’. But instead of the expected bloodbath, some very different actions ensued. Actions that revealed the heart of a very special Māori community. Actions that reverberated across the world and down through history’s pages. Actions that speak hope amidst the wounds of racial division and suffering in today’s world.

1880’s New Zealand comes to life

… with engaging characters, climactic events and an evocative set. The Way of the Raukura follows the fortunes of two historical characters (Samuel Crombie Brown and Wiremu Hiroki) who come to Parihaka just prior to the invasion. What happens when a wanted criminal seeks refuge in a pacifist village? What happens when a news reporter breaks a government media ban? And what happens when an army of 1,600 marches on Parihaka?

Writing & Direction: a journey of partnership, participation & protection

Co-written & co-directed by Sarah Tahere (ko ngati raukawa me ngati toa Rangatira oku iwi) and Steve Worsley (nō Taranaki ahau)

In telling the story of two cultures it was essential to represent those two cultures in the directing of the show. As per the intent of Te Tiriti O Waitangi, this show is a Māori–Pākekā partnership at every level. While sharing overall directorship, Steve brings particular oversight to the music, and Sarah (with husband Mark Tahere) to cultural direction. The Production Team is filled out by Acting Coach Jo Rasmussen and Choreographer Rereaute Tamanui.

Sarah Tahere

Sarah Tahere wrote the song, ‘Under the Mountain’ which sparked the vision for the writing of this show. Her classical music and creative arts background, cultural and linguistic insight developed through teaching of Māori culture, and her ancestral link to Parihaka, have woven their way through the creation and development of this show.

Steve Worsley

A former concert pianist with a master’s degree in performance and composition, Steve combined his passion for music and interest in stories of justice and grace, to create the script and music for The Way of the Raukura. The Way of the Raukura features a seven piece live band (Bass, Drums, Electric Guitar, Keyboard, Trumpets & Grand Piano) traversing contemporary styles (soul, jazz, ballad), and some traditional cultural sounds.

Two Companies, One Cast

The Way of the Raukura features an outstanding array of Pākehā and Māori actor-singers from across Auckland, with high level experience in performing arts. Half of the cast play Māori characters (‘The Parihaka Company’) and the other half play European characters (‘The New Plymouth Company’). Working through the twin themes of hope and racism in a cast that represents these two races, has been a profound journey.

A Shared Journey

The Way of the Raukura brings our own history to life powerfully through the use of music and drama, in a way that’s relatable to both Māori and Pākehā audiences. Two audiences, two cultures, two styles of music and dance, but one common journey into the questions this era poses: What do we do with our anger? How do we view people who seem strange or different to us? What can we learn about cultural unity?

Bruce Mason Centre, Takapuna, Auckland
Production by Toitoi Collective