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Ihitai’A‘Veia – Star Navigator

Posted November 3rd, 2023

Orchestra Wellington and New Zealand Opera present...

Ihitai’A‘Veia – Star Navigator

9 December 2022 8.00pm, 11 December 2022 2.00pm

Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua

Composer & Lyricist: Tim Finn

Tahitian Monologues: Célestine Hitiura Vaite

Co-composer: Tom McLeod


Purea: Natasha Te Rupe Wilson

Tupaia: Emmanuel Fonoti-Fuimaono

James Cook: Paul Whelan

Orator: Norah Stevenson-Tuuga

Teata: TBC

With Orchestra Wellington, Orpheus Choir, Signature Choir and New Zealand Opera Chorus.

Aboard a cramped British scientific vessel in the vastness of the Pacific, two navigators find themselves locked on a collision course. One is a Tahitian priest, guided by his ancient knowledge of star pathways. The other a naval officer, desperate to prove both himself and his faith in science.

This beautiful and haunting new work by composer Tim Finn, co-composer Tom McLeod, with Tahitian monologues by Célestine Hitiura Vaite, tells the story of Tupaia, the Tahitian star navigator who sailed with James Cook, on the maiden voyage of the Endeavour in 1769. Ihitai‘Avei’a - Star Navigator explores the relationship between two master mariners, each from vastly different worlds, both far from home and unable to find their way into each other’s world.

After a sold out world premiere in Auckland in 2021, we are delighted to present Ihitai‘Avei’a - Star Navigator at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua with Orchestra Wellington.

Commissioned by West Australian Opera with New Zealand Opera.

Co-presented by New Zealand Opera and Orchestra Wellington.