Part of the Auckland City ‘Celebrate Pasifika’ Month and held at the Metro Theatre in Manukau, Pacific Dance Fono 2008 was the second Pacific Dance Fono.

It was at this fono that a decision was made that it should became an annual event and the Pacific Island Dance Forum (Pacific Dance New Zealand’s guiding committee) was created.

There were 57 participants representing all of the major Pacific Island groups and the event was opened by Pele Walker (Chair of Pacific Arts Committee, CNZ).

The keynote speaker, Lemi Ponifasio  artistic director of Mau Dance Company,( and 2008 Creative NZ Choreographic Fellow,  presented his particularly unique vision of Pacific dance.

 A panel presented information about sources of funding available for Pacific dance practitioners in the Auckland region. Panellists were  :  

  • Jenny Young, Community funding Coordinator, Manukau City Council. Jenny presented on Creative Communities funding giving participants an all round appreciation of how to access this funding and what funders are looking for.
  • Tarisi Vunidilo, Creative New Zealand Pacific Island Advisor Auckland. Tarisi outlined changes occurring in Creative New Zealand funding, particularly on how grants of $5000 or less would be handled over coming years and on how long term project funding would be focused on enabling development over long term goals.
  • Sally Markham, Auckland City Council. Sally focused on funding available to dancers, such as Creative Communities and Arts Alive funding. She also outlined the accommodation assistance fund for halls and venues. She also urged groups to discuss their projects with the Arts advisors of the city councils and creative New Zealand. Sally also encouraged participants to apply to the Ministry of Education Artists in Schools pilot project.

DANZ Facilitator Tania Kopytko gave an overview of DANZ’s role and its services for dancers.

Event Facilitators were Sefa Enari, Tania Kopytko, Susan Jordan (DANZ), Faye Jansen (DANZ).