David Whittet Films Blog
Independent New Zealand Film Production

Shooting the Music Video with Tia Takarangi-Chan

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The opening moments of a film are critical. The lights go down, the audience’s expectations are high... Those first images on the screen are vital to engage the audience and create the atmosphere.

I decided to open Amiri & Aroha with dawn over the Rere falls and camped out at Rere to get the scenes I was looking for to achieve a mystic, ethereal introduction to the story.

The opening sound and music is equally important. I wanted a waiata, a Māori song to introduce the film and to draw the audience into the film. As a result of our interviews on the Turanga FM radio station, I was very fortunate to meet Tia Takarangi-Chan who composed a beautiful waiata for the film and performed the song on the banks of the Rere falls. Tia appears at the beginning of the film as a kind of Māori goddess, a mystic spirit, inviting us into the story.

Tia’s soulful music adds so much depth and feeling to those precious opening moments of Amiri & Aroha.

Tia is also composing a haunting song for the Marae ceremony where the young Aroha and Hunapo are pledged to each other in a mock wedding. Tia has given me a preview of this song and it is going to be wonderful and add amazing atmosphere to this pivotal scene...

Tia is an awesome talent and I am absolutely confident that she will be a major recording star of the future.

Today’s video podcast features Tia’s beautiful song in a rough cut edit which I have quickly put together.