Māori and Pacific Dance tutors

Tuaine Robati ONZM, MEd, BA, DipTeach, DipTESL

Senior Lecturer and Artistic Director

Tuaine has been involved in various fields of Education since 1972, and has taught at all levels: primary, secondary and tertiary. He has been a member of various boards, including Creative New Zealand, Ministry of Education Languages Expert Panel, Chair of Ministry of Education Cook Islands Māori Language Curriculum, Advisory Council to Minister of Pacific Islands Affairs, Pacific Islands Polynesian Education Foundation Scholarship Board.

In his time at Whitireia, Tuaine has been Tour Manager of the Performing Arts at international festivals every year since 1994; and adjudicated at various Cook Islands dance competitions including the ASB Secondary Schools Festival. He is currently an adviser/consultant for Ministry of Education and Cook Islands Liaison Advisor for Whitireia

In 2013, Tuaine received the honour of Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Tupe Lualua, GDipArts, BAppA (Performing Arts), BAHons

Sāvaia, Lefaga, Leusoali’i, Luatuanu’u, Porirua
Lecturer, Siva Samoa

A graduate of Whitireia Performing Arts and Victoria University, Tupe Lualua is a practitioner of Pacific dance and theatre. As a student at Whitireia she performed at international folk festivals around the globe, then moved on to dance with the Whitireia graduate company Taumata for five years. In 2009, Tupe became the Samoa Performing Arts tutor at Whitireia New Zealand and devised her first theatre play with Toi Whaakari graduate Asalemo Tofete and Whitireia contemporary tutor Taofi Mose-Tuiloma, winning Pick of the Fringe at the Wellington Fringe Festival.

In 2012, Tupe founded Le Moana, a dance company of Whitireia graduates who have since created theatre shows Fatu Na Totō (Pick of the Fringe, Welington Fringe Festival 2013, Tempo New Zealand Dance Festival 2013, Pacific Dance New Zealand Festival 2016), Purple Onion (Putahi Festival 2015, Measina Festival 2016, Kia Mau Festival 2017). During 2016, Le Moana toured nationally throughout Hamilton and Auckland and internationally to Samoa, Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Los Angeles and San Diego, where they won the critics choice and top box office awards for their show 1918 at the San Diego International Fringe Festival. Le Moana also hosts the annual Measina Festival which was most recently presented at Pātaka Art + Museum in Porirua, receiving rave reviews as a standout feature in the Wellington Arts calendar for high quality Pacific Arts.

As a choreographer, Tupe has worked with artists such as Michel Tuffery and John Ioanem and was awarded the Pacific Dance Artist in residence with Pacific Dance New Zealand in 2013 and again in 2015. That same year, she was a mentor for the Pacific Dance New Zealand choreographic lab. As a performer, she danced for renowned French choreographer Reginē Chopinot from 2010-2013, performed in the Auckland Arts Festival 2016 season of Marama with The Conch and featured as an actor in the critically acclaimed White Guitar, also with The Conch.

Andy Gogo Tilo, BAppA (Performing Arts)

Manono-Tai, Luatuānu’u, Savaia-Tai, Lefaga, Hamilton, Wellington
Lecturer, Contemporary Dance

Andy is a graduate of the Whitireia degree programme. On completion of his studies, Andy danced with the internationally renowned Black Grace Dance company lead by Neil Ieremia.

As the choreographer and principal dancer for Le Moana 2015, Andy created 1918 which premiered in Wellington and was then remounted for follow-up seasons at the Mangere Arts Centre in Auckland and at the National University of Sāmoa. 1918 was most recently presented in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne as part of Le Moana’s Australian tour and at the San Diego International Fringe Festival, receiving rave reviews, winning the critic’s choice award and also the top box office award for the Spreckles Theater. Andy also features as Rocko in Le Moana’s production of Purple Onion and was a lead dancer in the Fatu Na Toto collaboration with the Melbourne Samoan Choir during Le Moana’s Australian tour.

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