Rowley Habib (Rore Hapipi)

Writer [Ngāti Tūwharetoa]

Rowley Habib — also known as Rore Hapipi — was one of the first writers to bring a genuinely Māori perspective to New Zealand stage and screen. His play Death of the Land is seen as a landmark in the development of Māori theatre. In 1983 Habib won a Feltex Award for land rights drama The Protestors, part of a trio of pioneering one-off plays for television. Habib passed away on 3 April 2016.

I had the problem that nobody wanted to touch Māori theatre with a ten-foot pole. A hundred-foot pole really. Rowley Habib, recalling the early days of Māori theatre