Rātana’s iconic brass bands
Possibly the most distinctive, iconic and colourful characteristics of the Rātana faith are its brass bands.
The bands are called 'Ngā Reo' and according to leader Perenara Ririnui says that what they do is to clear the pathway for the faithful.
“Ko te whakahirahiratanga o tēnei mahi, he whakawātea anō i te huarahi anō mo ngā Mōrehu, mō te whakapono anō hoki.”
He also says it’s also about praising God.
“It's all about giving praise to the Lord of Hosts and to give Him glory. So we're giving praise to the Lord for his blessings.”
Ririnui has been doing this for over 30 years; he is now in charge of all of the Ngā Reo bands.
“The head of the bands in 1996 said to me if I could lead Ngā Reo, the band, and since then that's what I've been doing.”
He says many of the members want the young generations to follow in the footsteps of their ancestors.
“He tino kaha ake e hoa i runga i te mea he honohonotanga anō ngā tamariki mokopuna, ki ō rātou mātua tīpuna e mahi nei ēnei mahi i ngā wā o mua. Nō reira he tino hononga anō he tino kaingākau ngā mokopuna o te iwi Mōrehu ki tēnei momo mahi e mahi nei e rātou mā.”
Practicing will help them draw the crowds when performing publically.
The voice of the Lord of Hosts will be heard.