The simple beauty of Oriwia Maxwell’s voice is the perfect complement to the clear lyrics she wrote for ‘Mana Motuhake’, the song that won her second place, and a $500 gift card, in the Rangatahi section of the 2019 E Tū Whānau song competition.
Fourteen-year-old Oriwia of Ngaati Raukawa, Rangitaane me Rongowhakaata, has been singing and performing kapa haka since she was a toddler.
Fellow Māori artists like Rob Ruha and Maisey Rika are her inspiration and her whānau are her constant and dedicated support team. They helped her write the song and videoed and edited the video of her singing it.
Her whānau and extended whānau are super proud of their talented rangatahi and look forward to seeing what the future holds for her.
Singing, they say, is her passion, her ‘place of belonging’ and way of expressing herself.
“Through this journey we, as a whānau, have seen her find her voice and her greatness.”
“This waiata is about reclaiming our greatness, our rangatiratanga. It was written to help encourage others to find their voice and is a reminder to try and follow the tikanga of our ancestors, especially in times of struggle and healing.”
Oriwia’s award winning song is dedicated to her Papa ‘Mitchell Maxwell’, “who is forever loved”.
This is the fourth year we have held the E Tū Whānau song competition. It is based on the idea that no matter how big or small, we can all make a difference and be responsible for creating positive change within our whānau, hapū, iwi and community.
Entrants are invited to write an original song inspiring positive change, and incorporating one or more of E Tū Whānau’s values; Aroha, Whanaungatanga, Whakapapa, Mana/Manaaki, Kōrero Awhi, and Tikanga. You can read more about the E Tū Whānau kaupapa here.