Events nationwide continue to be cancelled due to safety precautions following the Christchurch tragedy on Friday 15 March 2019.
Some performers for this year's ASB Polyfest in Auckland, however, have been given another lifeline, in particular, Division 1 students for the Māori Stage will have the opportunity to showcase their hard work in the coming weeks.
The decision to cancel Polyfest was made hours after the Christchurch attack, the chair of the ASB Polyfest Trust Gregory Pierce and ASB Polyfest Event Director, Seiuli Terri Leo Mauu, stated then that, “The safety and well-being of our student performers and the public that come to enjoy the festival is always paramount in our planning.
“[Today’s] events in Christchurch have unsettled some of our performers, Polyfest staff, schools and our sponsors, and to respect their well-being we have decided to cancel the final day of the festival.
“If the event had gone ahead there would have been a significant presence of heavily armed police at the festival which would not have been appropriate for Saturday’s family day focus at the ASB Polyfest.”
There was a mixed reaction on social media to the cancellation announcement.
This week, Pierce confirmed, " There has been feedback and requests for a postponement and an alternative date for last Saturday's performances to take place."
“We are mindful of the disappointment of school groups who did not get to perform at the 2019 ASB Polyfest on Saturday," he says.
The organising committee has also confirmed that the competition results from competitions across any of the stages that were fully completed prior to Saturday 16 March will stand.
This includes Divisions 2 & 3 on the Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiarangi Māori Stage, the Pacific Speech competitions, and the Non-Competitive section on the AUT Cook Islands Stage which was completed on Friday 15 March.
The new date for the Māori Stage Division 1 is Saturday 6 April 2019, and the competition will be held at the Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau.
Here is the schedule of Division 1 performances for the Māori Stage: