At the centre of the MOTU-MATARIKI Festival, Over My Dead Body: WITH THESE HANDS is a devised multilingual, multidisciplinary work that follows a young tuahine (girl) navigating her ‘special gift’ in a series of spiritual encounters. After a Western mental health disorder diagnosis, her ghosts are determined to ensure she rightfully is acknowledged as a tohunga.
Featuring text in English, Te Reo Maori, Samoan – contemporary dance and hip-hop, Pasifika siva and taualuga, and haka – and the music of Ria Hall, Maisey Rika and other contemporary artists.
In line with the Over My Dead Body series by Jason Te Mete, the influence, mana and power that our dead ancestors still carry is the driving force of the work – a thrilling ghost story – encouraging you to let go of your fear, grab hold of the future, but always remember where you came from.
Under the gentle glow of Matariki, WITH THESE HANDS blends fact and fiction with humour, pathos and truth, exploring moments from our history with a legitimate indigenous lens, highlighting the effects on our communities during the Maori land wars (Pukehinahina), WWI, the Mau Movement, the Dawn Raids, Black Lives Matter, and the COVID19 Lockdown/Rahui (in particular climate change issues pertinent to the Hauraki Gulf).