Tihei, Mauri Ora!
This cycle is dedicated to Frank Albinder and the Washington Men's Camerata who, with Clarinettist William Wright, gave it a wonderfully successful world premiere at the Kennedy Center, Washington DC on May 30, 2003. You may read the review here. MP3 recordings from this performance are below along with MIDI practice tapes. A recording of a reading by a Maori speaker is available on request. I would be happy to send a free perusal score of this work to anyone who is interested in seeing it.Tihei, Mauri Ora! consists of six highly contrasted settings of ancient Màori texts from various regions of New Zealand.
Tihei, mauri ora ki te ao marama!
Ka mama rà tara ki uta,
Ka mama rà tara ki tai,
Ka mama rà kai ariki;
Tihei, tohe ora!
Breathe, life spirit in the light of day!
There is plenty inland,
Plenty in the sea,
Enough food even for a chief;
Breathe, living soul!
an ancient chant, thought originally to be part of the tohi
or baptismal rite, it has been incorporated into many other chants. This is a simple, but exuberant two part setting, the only one
in which the clarinet is silent.
E tama i whanake i te ata o Pipiri,
Piki, nau ake, e tama,
Ki tòu tini i te rangi;
E puta rànei koe, e tama, i te wà kaikino nei?
Taku tamaiti, hohoro te korikori
Kia tae atu koe ki te wai ahupuke i ò tìpuna,
Kia wetea mai ko te tòpuni tauwhàinga
Hei kahu mòhou ki te whakarewanga taua.
Ko te toroa uta, nàku i tautara ki te akerautangi,
Ko te toroa tai, nàku i kapu mai i te huka o te tai,
Whakangaro ana ki ngà tai rutu ì.
Son, born on a winter morning,
Climb up, ascend my boy,
To meet your many ancestors in heaven;
Will you survive these evil times?
My child, go quickly
So you may reach the sacred waters of your forefathers,
And they may pass on to you the black dogskin cloak of war
To wear when the expeditions set forth.
I have bound the red kaka feather to my weapon,
I have caught the albatross feather from the foaming waves,
Just as it was sinking in stormy waters.
high chief of Ngàti Kahungungu (Hawkes Bay) in the mid-18th
century, composed this for his son, Te Hauapo. As with many oriori
it exhorts the child to seek the knowledge of his ancestors in order
to rescue his tribe from misfortune as his father has done in the
past. Te toroa uta the land albatross, is a poetical
term for the kaka (a bush parrot). This setting is for double choir
with tenor and bass soloists. It incorporates rhythmic spoken and
E patu ana ahau, e patu ana koe!
Taku ràkau tohe ki te riri,
I nawhea ia rà? I ngà pàhake!
E hau ana taku patu, ko Poroku!
I tuituia i te hinapòuri,
I whakawhetù ai aku kanohi!
Auè! Ka ao te rà, è!
I strike, you strike!
My weapon is strong in battle,
Where does it come from? From ancient times!
My club moves swiftly, its called Poroku!
Its thong was tied in darkness,
So my eyes would be like stars!
Oh! It is day, ah!
in this very ancient song the image of daylight conquering
darkness is associated with success in battle. Darkness is also an
image for the mists of time. For double choir and
incorporating pitched, rhythmic speech and body percussion.
He Waiata Tangi
Kapokapo kau ana te whetù i te rangi;
Ko Meremere aný tàku e hiko atu,
Tauhòkai ana Kòpù i te ata;
Ko taku teina tonu tènei ka hoki mai!
Taku tau kahurangi ka makere i ahau;
Nàku i tuku atu i te hinapòuri,
Ngà tìtahatanga i waho Te Tahua,
E whano ana rà ki te kaweàriri,
Kia tù mai koe i mua i te ùpoko
I te whana tukutahi, i te nui Àti Tahu,
Kia pùhia koe te ahi a te tipua,
Kia whakamuraia te paura o tawhiti;
Haehaea koe ki te mahi a tipua,
Kia rewa tò hinu ki roto o Kaituna;
Kia whakataukì au, è, he mamae nà ì!
Iri mai, e pà, i runga i te atamira,
Kupa mai, e te hoa, kia rongo atu au
I te tàkiritanga o te ata, nà ì!
Me whakahoki koe ngà matatàhuna
I waho o Tauranga; Ma ò pòtiki
Koe e hurihuri iho ki te papa o te waka,
Kia tirohia iho tò kiri rauiti,
Tò mata i haea ki te toroa-à-tai,
He toroa tatakì ný runga Karewa, nà ì!
The stars flash brightly in the sky;
I see the evening star shining,
And the morning star floating up at dawn;
It is my brother returning!
My dearest treasure was abandoned by me;
I allowed him to go, in darkness,
Down the winding paths beyond Te Tahua,
Going forth to battle,
Charging at the head
Of the multitude of Ngati Tahu,
The demons fire was hurled at you,
The powder was set ablaze from afar;
You were slashed with the demons weapon,
And your blood floated down Kaituna river;
And I grieve for you, what pain, oh, alas!
Lie there on that funeral platform,
Or soar away, my friend, so I may hear you
At the break of day, alas!
They will take you back to the beaches
Beyond Tauranga; Your sons
Will turn you about in the bottom of the canoe,
To gaze on your beautiful body,
Your face tatooed with the albatross bone,
An albatross from Karewa, alas!
Tupaea (ca. 1800-81) high chief of Ngàiterangi in
the Tauranga district composed this lament for his younger brother,
Te Korohiko. The term tipua demons, often referred
to Europeans. This musical setting shares many features with the original
chant, including the displacement of natural word stresses and the
incorporation of a break in the middle of a phrase or word, both devices
serving to heighten expressive power. For TTBB with tenor and bass
soloists. Contains simple passages of sustained, three-part whistling.
E muri ahiahi, takoto ki te moenga;
He nui te whakapono ki te papa karakia!
Tukua mai, e ra, te ture a te Atua,
Tènei ngà anahera kei runga ia a koe.
Haere atu koe, Kiri, ki Maunga Oriwa,
Te kakenga a Ihu, i whano ai ki te rangi.
Nàku koe i tuku ki te motu o Ihowa,
I ahu tò wairua ki runga ki Kènana.
Ka paingia e Koe te hunga whakapono;
Te tangata tinihanga ka whiua ki te mate.
In the evening, I lie thinking in my bed;
How strong is my faith in prayer!
Bring us Gods law,
While angels watch over you.
Kiri, go forth to the Mount of Olives,
Where Jesus rose up into the sky.
I let you go to Jehovahs land,
And your spirit went up to Canaan.
Those who believe will receive Gods blessing;
Those who are evil will be punished by death.
|Anon. (ca. 1850) probably from Northland. Kiri is the name of the
relative who has died. This transitional text integrates
some of the sentiments of a traditional waiata tangi with
the imagery of a Wesleyan hymn. This lyrical and sentimental
setting is for TTBB and six solo whistlers each with one distinct
rhythmic motif frequently repeated. The timing of these repetitions
may be as written or improvised.
Reprise of the first text, for double TTBB in a
more complex setting, this time with clarinet.
I would like to acknowledge my use of the following sources for the texts and background information, and for the basis of some of the translations above: Mitcalfe, Barry, 1974. Maori Poetry: The Singing Word, Price Milburn; Ngata, Sir Apirana, 1970, Nga Moteatea, Part III, Polynesian Society; Orbell, Margaret, 1978. Maori Poetry, Heinemann; 1991. Waiata: Maori Songs in History, Reed; Orbell, M. & McLean, Mervyn, 1990. Traditional Songs of the Maori, Auckland University Press.