Ngāti Tamaterā, Ngāti Hauā, Hāmoa
Turia opitimises the Ahikāroa kaupapa, a series that showcases the stories of Kura Kaupapa raised urban rangatahi. When asked ‘Where she learnt te reo Māori?’ Turia phrased a more suitable response, ko te pātai e tika ana, “I ako ahau i taku reo Pākehā i hea? Ko te reo Māori kē taku reo tuatahi.” A graduate of Waikato University’s Bachelors of Communications and Bachelor of Arts studies, Turia is also a a kaiwhakariterite of the beloved TV series Pūkana. A powerful force both on screen and off screen it is no wonder that we all want ‘a friend like Geo!’
Nepia is no stranger to the performance arts, this Rotorua local can be found at Maori performing villages in his hometown. His passion for kapa haka encouraged him to take a leap into the world of acting and we are glad he did. Impressing audiences on stage, and upsetting audiences on screen, we hate to love his Ahikāroa character Hemi.
Ngāti Hau, Te Waiariki, Ngāpuhi Taniwha Rau
Hailing from Te Tai Tokerau, Tukairangi didn’t plan for a life on screen. A business and marketing graduate, Tukairangi accredits his desire to take on this profession to watching ‘Maori Greats’, the likes of Cliff Curtis, and how his Hollywood success is an inspirational feat. With a name that means to ‘shoot for the stars’, it’s no wonder that Tukairangi’s acting career is heading in that same direction.
Paetawhiti, meaning to ‘Arise like the Sun and shine out’ is humble is his classification of his title as an ‘actor’. A student of the craft, Whiti accredits his desire to act as being one that allows him to experience challenging scenarios, that in turn develop him as a person. Originally studying as an electrical engineer Whiti found himself auditioning for Ahikāroa on S2 and now following through into S3 we can’t wait to see what trouble he is in now.
Before you jump to a guess that Aniwa is short for Aniwaniwa, take a lesson from Aniwa’s Nan, she knows Aniwa to be the name for the halo above an angel’s head, and we know Aniwa to embody this energy no less! Straight out of kura kaupapa and on to our screens Aniwa plays our beloved Kid. A naturally gifted performer, Aniwa bought Kid to life and has quickly become a fan fave.
Newcomer Kauri is not only a fresh new face for Ahikāroa, but he is a fresh new face to the industry. Having arrived on the Ahikāroa doorstep directly after graduating from an acting Degree at Unitech, Kauri loves telling stories, loves the journey, the struggle and the outcomes both good and bad. Named for the attributes that embody the ancient Kauri tree, Kauri is bound to bring the mana of this ancestry to his character Whatukura.
TE URURANGI AKINEHI
You might recognise Aki from the theatre stage! Aki began her career reprising the role of ‘Annie’, and prior to Ahikāroa was working on a children’s theatre show ‘Tu Meke Tūi’. Making her Ahikāroa debut as Te Ururangi this season, Aki has been challenged with digging into te taha wairua (the Māori spiritual world). Aki has always been creative, active, and a touch dramatic, so pursuing acting as a career was a natural path for her.