International New Zealand Artists

the Australian
Performing Arts Market 2010

Welcome, and thank you for your interest in Tuhonohono.

Jamie Bull

Jamie Bull

Phone or email me
to arrange a meeting.

+64 27 444 9995

Tuhonohono, Wellington 2007

Tuhonohono sounds like a New Zealand landscape — in the best sense of what that might mean


The Maori word, Tuhonohono means "to bring together, to weave, to join, to support" — in Tuhonohono Gillian Whitehead weaves together the strands of Maori and European musical traditions.

The Tuhonohono ensemble is a group of two to eight of New Zealand's top musicians that performs Whitehead’s work.

There is still only one contemporary classical composer in Aotearoa who really knows what to do with the old Maori instruments and this is Gillian Karawe Whitehead. This is music of our land, our waters and winds, our forests, our birds and insects and of our Maori people, as of no other — you will not hear it's like anywhere else. Jenny McLeod 2005

Tuhonohono is an exceptional chamber music combination with significant international relevance, because of the way it treads a line between Maori and Western concepts. This is outstanding festival fare.

Tuhonohono made it's international debut, at Art Summit Indonesia 2004. In 2005 they performed in Rotorua, in 2006 they performed in the Bay of Island Arts Festival to critical acclaim with the reviewer giving them 10/10! And in 2007 they gave performances in Auckland and Wellington under the auspices of Chamber Music New Zealand. In 2006 a Gillian Whitehead Showcase was presented by ERGO in Toronto, and was really a Tuhonohono work with local musicians plus New Zealand's Richard Nunns.

Gillian Whitehead

Gillian Whitehead and Richard Nunns

Gillian Karawe Whitehead is one of New Zealand’s pre-eminent composers, though she is happily shared and claimed by both her native New Zealand and by Australia, where she has lived for much of her creative career. Spanning more than 40 years, her work includes opera, orchestral, choral, chamber and solo works. In 2000, she received an inaugural Laureate award from the Arts Foundation of New Zealand and in 2003 she received an honorary Doctorate of Music from Victoria University of Wellington.

International programme

Tuhonohono is keen to achieve one international engagement each year.

The ideal combination from Gillian’s perspective is piano, soprano, taonga puoro (tradtional Maori musical instruments), bassoon, flute, Kaikaranga (Maori caller) and cello; plus Gillian herself to introduce the works.

However flexibility is the key: talk to us about what will work for you.

Rating out of 10: 10 Tuhonohono was very special indeed, a marvellous evocative celebration of the wonders of our country, with music to be listened to and experienced Jill Cottle, Northern News, 2006


  • Return travel from NZ, plus accommodation and per diem.
  • A modest fee is negotiable.
  • Excess baggage charges (approx 15kgs) for the taonga puoro (traditional Maori musical instruments) and transport for the cello.

Tuhonohono Staging / theatre requirements

Flute and Maori musical instrument, Tuhonohono
  • There will be a Powerpoint slide show, before and during the performance.
  • Computer and Data Projector and cyc or suitable smooth surface to project onto.
  • Lectern and microphone for Gillian.
  • Technician for lighting and manning the data projector.
  • Lights focussed onto the performers cluster — not just a full stage wash.
  • Grand Steinway piano and piano stool.
  • Chairs for 4.
  • Small table to rest flutes on.
  • Large table (trestle size) for the taonga puoro (tradtional Maori musical instruments).
  • 5 music stands.