Rakei Manava is a Te Maeva Nui event this year and has been designed to inspire cultural teams to create the best Cook Islands-inspired costumes.
The new initiative will be sponsored by CITC who have signed on as a platinum sponsor of Te Maeva Nui to the tune of $100,000, includes an exciting prize package of $25,000.
“CITC is delighted to be involved with this opportunity for Cook Islanders to deliver the best in Cook Islands-inspired dance costumes,” says company director Dianna Clarke-Bates.
Over the years the dancers and performers and their performance have been highlighted and this year, recognition is to be given to those who create the dance costumes. “I have been brought up in a family passionate about our Cook Islands culture,” says Dianna. “I am inspired in particular by my mother, Vaine Clarke, who lives and breathes her culture.
“Her dedication to the Ta’akoka Dance Troupe and in particular her creativity with her many past winning dance costume designs is the inspiration for Rakei Manava.”
Rakei Manava aims to encourage originality, creativity and artistic quality.
“Cook Islanders have this natural gift, a talent and passion for our culture.” The competition will see a ‘natural section’ for male and female dance costumes as well as an ‘open section’ for the best male or female costume.
The cash prizes provided by CITC will see the winners of the natural section in both the men’s and women’s division take home $5000 each, with second place to receive $3000 and third place $1000.
In the open section – the winner (male or female) will take home $4000, with second place winning $2000 and third place $1000. The dance costumes will be judged with emphasis on visual impact, creativity, quality of construction and the costumes’ cultural representation.
Application forms are available from CITC Avarua and the Ministry of Culture.
An applicant can be for one individual, several individuals together or a team.
The Rakei Manava competition will be held on Wednesday July 22 at the Edgewater Resort.
The dance costumes will be paraded and the winners announced the same evening, with the cash prizes awarded for the standout Cook Islands-inspired costumes.