Thursday, July 26, 2007

Te Wiki o Reo Maori

Kia ora koutou. Well, Maori Language Week has almost slipped me by. I was thinking of saying kia ora to my students but being completely unhabituated to greeting with Maori I have failed every single time. Ah well. Hei aha...

More entertaining this wiki has been the performance of newsreaders and current affairs hosts trying to speak reo Maori. Simon Dallow started the wiki saying an extended maori introduction on OneNews. He is actually, to my ears, very proficient. He showed that during the tangi of the Maori Queen that he could more than handle himself with reo. I'd say he'd kick my ass in Maori even without a teleprompter. He has clearly put work into it.

The rest clearly have not. John Sainsbury was only marginally better than Dick Hubbard's at the ANZAC day ceremony (i.e. reading it off a script with English vowels). DH's effort was cringing. Wendy Petrie was the best of a bad bunch. John Campbell was surprisingly poor. He does well in his regular greetings but as soon as it moves to something less practised (er... the Maori national anthem) his vowels turn out mangled.

'Foreign' languages are difficult and not everyone can master them. But I was a little disappointed that something like basic pronunciation was not better. They make their living speaking; the obligation should be on them or placed on them to shape up.

Anyway, my contribution to te wiki o reo Maori is to provide this link on the basics of greeting in te reo Maori.

1 comment:

Crypticity said...

I might have to take some of the comments back. Mark Sainsbury spoke better in his intro last night so he has either upped his game or he was a little stagefrightened. I can relate to that with speaking a different language suddenly. John Campbell was a little better at what little he said last night too.

I listened to Radio NZ in the car this morning and they used Maori in a better way in their introductions, using easily adaptable introductions, rather than the proper but complicated intros used by the TV anchors.