Irirangi te Motu/NZ On Air and Te M​ā​ngai Pāho are proud to announce their first ​official music funding ​collaboration, with the launch of ​Waiata Takitahi​ focused on songs featuring te reo Māori.

​The ​music funding initiative, which ​opens in ​Whiringa-ā-nuku​ (October) will be seeking new songs that incorporate te reo Māori lyrics with a minimum of 25% te reo Māori content. The fund will be open to musicians from all backgrounds who have a genuine interest in writing and recording ​waiata​ ​integrating​ ​te reo Māori​, with an eye to distribution across​ mainstream audiences via online and broadcast platforms.

The ​Waiata Takitahi f​unding amount is $14,000 (+ GST) per track, ​which can cover costs of recording, video content and promotion, ​and also be used to​ cover costs of te reo specialists or coaches to assist with the writing and recording of the songs.

NZ On Air and ​Te Māngai Pāh​o expect to be able to support up to 12 new songs in this inaugural Waiata Takitahi​ funding round. The grant also incorporates the new Artist Creation Fee of up to $1,000 (optional) to recognise the artists creation of the original song.

There will be high expectations ​placed on​ the quality of te reo to be used in the funded songs, and te reo Māori consultants and​ language experts must be engaged to ensure quality control and the contextual relevance in the tracks.

NZ On Air’s Head of Music David Ridler says this focus round of funding is the logical next step in the collegial relationship with ​Te Māngai Pāho.​ “We have been actively looking for a way to work together in an official capacity to work on a common goal – break more local music incorporating te reo Māori into the mainstream.”

Te Mangai Pāho Kaiarahi Puoro Nadia Marsh agrees​. ​“Artists are driving the kaupapa, and we are in full support. ​The 2019 Waiata/Anthems project ​demonstrates just how effortlessly te reo Māori can be integrated into our nation’s everyday listening,​” she says.

Applications for the ​Waiata Takitahi​ round will open on ​22 o Whiringa-ā-nuku​ (22 October), with the deadline ​Rāpare, 12 o Whiringa-ā-rangi (12 November)​ at 4:00pm. Funding decisions will be announced in ​Hakihea​ (December). Applications will be online-only and will be made through NZ On Air’s New Music Single application portal.

For more details on the Waiata Takitahi focus round including application criteria and an FAQ head to our website.