What is Waiata Takitahi?

Funding of up to $14,000 (plus GST, if registered) is available to put towards the costs of recording a single song, creating video content and other visual collateral, and putting resource towards promotion, publicity, and marketing for the single release. Funds may also be used to pay for the services of a te reo Māori language consultant (mātanga reo).

There is also a $1,000 mandatory Artist Creation Fee which was introduced in January 2024, for internal creative services provided to the project by the artist. This brings the total Waiata Takitahi funding up to $15,000.

Waiata Takitahi – (‘single song’) – is a co-fund launched as a collaboration between NZ On Air and Te Māngai Pāho and the first round opened in November 2020.

We are seeking applications from New Zealand artists who are interested in recording and releasing a bilingual single with potential general audience appeal and a minimum of 25% te reo Māori in the song lyrics. We are looking for songs that will target online and broadcast audiences and have potential to find a home on mainstream playlists.

Artists can come from any background but the use of te reo Māori in the song will be expected to be overseen by a te reo Māori language consultant to ensure quality control and the contextual relevance in the song.

For applicants who are not able to confirm a language consultant before the application deadline, there will be an opportunity to be matched with a range of consultants via Te Māngai Pāho.

Waiata Takitahi funding criteria – Are you eligible?

All artist applicants must meet a minimum of 5 out of 25 criteria before you can apply for Waiata Takitahi funding.
Before you apply for Waiata Takitahi funding you must ensure you reach our entry threshold criteria, as well as ensuring your music is classified as New Zealand music.

To qualify for funding you must answer ‘yes’ to at least 5 out of the 25 criteria set out in the funding criteria document below.

The document will ask you about:

  • Potential to assist with increasing levels of New Zealand music on radio
  • Potential to impact online audiences with significant streams/views/shares/likes/sales
  • Integration of te reo Māori in the waiata
  • Track record of the artist
  • Cultural value of the project for New Zealand audiences
  • Strength of the overall application, plan and media targets

Waiata Takitahi Oct/Dec

Applications Open: Thursday 17 October

Applications Close: Thursday 7 November, 4pm

Results Published: Thursday 5 December