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Sunday, October 02, 2011

A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots: Part Eight The Haka




Haka is a posture dance performed by a group, with vigorous movements and stamping of the feet with rhythmically shouted accompaniment. It was traditionally an ancestral challenge from the Māori of the North Island of New Zealand (Aotearoa). Today Haka is performed as a hearty welcome to distinguished guests, and has become associated with the All Blacks. As part of the performance, including facial contortions such as showing the whites of the eyes and the poking out of the tongue, and a wide variety of vigorous body actions such as slapping the hands against the body and stamping of the feet make for a very visual display. A variety of cries are mixed with chanted words and grunts. The haka must be performed in total unison as to do otherwise would be regarded as a bad omen.

Rugby was introduced to New Zealand in the late 1860s by Charles Monro. He played the game as a student at Christ's College, Finchley. The first union was formed in 1879 in Canterbury, New Zealand and the first international matches were played when the Australian Southern Rugby Union toured the country in 1882. The first overseas tour by the New Zealand team took place in 1884 and the team performed a haka before each match. In 1905 a representative New Zealand team, referred to as the Originals , toured Britain. During the tour a London newspaper reported the New Zealanders played as if they were "all backs". But due to a typographical error, this came out as "All Blacks". The name stuck and the national team of New Zealand have played in black shirts, shorts and socks, ever since. The Originals performed a haka before some of their matches. Later the "Ka Mate" haka was adopted by the New Zealand National Rugby Union (NZNRU ) and the All Blacks are thought to have performed it first in 1906.



The Ka Mate haka is commonly thought to have been composed by Te Rauparaha of Ngāti Toa to commemorate his escape from death during an incident in 1810.

The "Ka Mate" haka generally opens with a set of five preparatory instructions shouted by the leader, before the whole team joins in:

Leader: Ringa pakia! (Slap the hands against the thighs!)
Uma tiraha! (Puff out the chest.)
Turi whatia! (Bend the knees!)
Hope whai ake! (Let the hip follow!)
Waewae takahia kia kino! (Stomp the feet as hard as you can!)

Leader: Ka mate, ka mate ('I die, I die,)
Team: Ka ora' Ka ora' ('I live, 'I live,)
Leader: Ka mate, ka mate ('I die, 'I die)
Team: Ka ora Ka ora " ('I live, 'I live,)
All: Tēnei te tangata pūhuruhuru (This is the hairy man)
Nāna i tiki mai whakawhiti te rā
(...Who caused the sun to shine again) for me
A Upane! Ka Upane! (Up the ladder, Up the ladder)
Upane Kaupane" (Up to the top)
Whiti te rā,! (The sun shines!)

A new haka, "Kapa o Pango" was introduced in 2005 with words more specific to the rugby team and refer to the warriors in black and the silver fern. The new haka did include a controversial throat cutting gesture which has met with several complaints from opponents. The All Blacks used the "Kapa o Pango" haka before the French match on the 24th September 2011. The French had previously ousted New Zealand at the 2007 World Cup.




Kapa o Pango kia whakawhenua au i ahau! (All Blacks, let me become one with the land)
Hī aue, hī!
Ko Aotearoa e ngunguru nei! (This is our land that rumbles)
Au, au, aue hā! (It’s my time! It’s my moment!)
Ko Kapa o Pango e ngunguru nei! (This defines us as the All Blacks)
Au, au, aue hā! (It’s my time! It’s my moment!)
I āhahā!
Ka tū te ihiihi (Our dominance)
Ka tū te wanawana (Our supremacy will triumph)
Ki runga ki te rangi e tū iho nei, tū iho nei, hī!
(And be placed on high)
Ponga rā! (Silver fern!)
Kapa o Pango, aue hī! (All Blacks!)
Ponga rā! (Silver fern!)
Kapa o Pango, aue hī, hā! (All Blacks!)




Read more
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part One: Introduction
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Two: History of the Games
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Three: Rules of the Games
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Four: Rugby Boots
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Five: Studs or Cleats
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Six: Flower of Scotland
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Seven: How to choose rugby boots
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Part Eight: The Haka
A potted history of the rugby world cup, the rules of the game and rugby boots Nine: Rugby Injuries

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