Celebrate Late Night Art at Britomart with two sensational Samoan dance groups. Renowned Samoan contemporary artist Ankaramy Fepulea'i and his group will perform SUIGA, a vibrant contemporary work that combines traditional Samoan siva with street dance – and explores the collision of pre-colonial spirituality with imported religious practices.
Later that night, things get even hotter (literally) with Samoan arts company Wāhine Toa Siva Afi, which brings its traditional spectacular fire dance to light up Takutai Square. Come and witness the incredible commitment of this all-woman group to upholding Samoan cultural heritage and reclaiming the art of Siva Afi.
Ankarmy Fepulea'i | SUIGA
Dancers: Al-Gervahn Lisimoni, Lyncia Muller, Lonisha Lualua and Ankaramy Fepulea'i
For many Pasifika communities, religion and traditions are intertwined and fundamental elements of identity as Pasifika peoples today. SUIGA is a decolonial choreographic exploration of Christianity within the Pacific. The work comments on the first encounter of Christianity in Samoa during the 1830s and the disruptive shifts and changes that took place as the Samoan people adjusted to a new way of life.
Wāhine Toa Siva Afi
Dancers: Melanie Tia, Hadassah Tagoai-Vaoa, Emillie Lovett | Drumline: Helen Pritchard, Sarah-Luisa Pula, Juelz Pula, JP Vaoa
Wāhine Toa Siva Afi & Drumline was established in 2020. An all women's team who perform the art of Siva Afi (Samoan fire dance) accompanied with a drumline. Within the team, there are 3x World Champions, 2x NZ Siva Afi Junior Champions and NZ Siva Afi Runner Up. To ignite the fire within, Wāhine Toa Siva Afi encourage, educate and empower Pasifika women to take up the siva afi/fire knife dance art form.
Part of ArtWeek in the City Centre 2023.
Image credit: Geoffery Matautia (@southsides)