Te Fare O Tamatoa
Tahitian Dancing & Drumming

Instructors

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Manu Radford- Director of Music

Manu Radford was captivated by the drums growing up next door to the Hotel Tahiti on the island of Tahiti. There, he would spend many a night crouching in the shrubs to get a glimpse of the various professionals performing nightly. His first drumming lesson was at the age of 12, in Tahiti, by his uncle Roger and his group Teanuaua. Uncle Roger was Manu’s initial inspiration. Others that have inspired him are Tavana, Coco Hotahota, Tapo Aroquiame, Tetua Iaone and Hei Kura Nui. Self-Taught, Manu performed with Tiare Tahiti in the 70s then started a group known as Mana in the 80s. In 2004 he partnered with Tapo Aroquiame and his group called Apatoerau. In 2006, Te Fare O Tamatoa was formed.



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Solana Rollolazo

At the young age of 8, dance became an important form of self-expression for Solana.  In 2006, she along with her fellow dancers visited the beautiful island of Tahiti. There her love for Tahitian dance grew as she witnessed the depth to which it helps preserve the history and culture of the Tahitian people. Under the directions of Manio and Nanave Radford, Solana evolved as a dancer and at age 14 she began teaching. In this role Solana has had the opportunity to teach UW students in preparation for their annual PolyDay event, return to Tahiti in 2010 where she had the privilege of experiencing Heiva and learning from Moeata (Tamari’I Poerava). In 2011 she competed in the Tahiti Taurua Nui competition in Las Vegas, and in 2012 she took first place in her category.


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Teina Radford

Although he grew up surrounded by Tahitian culture, it wasn’t until Teina returned from Tahiti in 2006 that he decided to dance. Inspired by the beauty and history of his people, coupled with is desire to preserve Tahitian culture, Teina began to study traditional Tahitian dance moves and seek the advice of his dad Manu, and brother Tamatoa. Today, Teina is a captivating principal dancer for Te’arama. His passion and talent as a self-taught dancer is demonstrated as he teaches and choreographs the male dancers for Te Fare O Tamatoa. In 2011 Teina helped choreograph a stunning piece for Dance This. In 2011 Teina competed in the Tahiti Taurua Nui competition in Las Vegas, where he won first place, and in 2012 he defended his title.

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Nanave Radford- Director of Dance

Nanave found her love for movement at age 5 in the form of gymnastics and continued through high school. After many years of training and competing, her passion migrated to Tahitian dancing when her dad, a Native Tahitian, took her with him to a dance practice he drummed for. This is when Nanave fell in love with her culture. At age 14 she began performing with the Tahitian dance group Apatoerau and in 2004 she was asked to assistant teach. Since 2006, she has been dance director and choreographer for Te Fare O Tamatoa, and their performance group Te’a rama who performs around the greater Seattle area. She has competed in Tahitian dance competitions taking first place in her category at the Taurua Nui I Las Vegas in 2006 and 2011. By age 19 Nanave had put together her first production in "The legend of lake Vaihiria" that debuted at the Northwest Folklife festival in 2008. Nanave has been fortunate enough to take classes while in Tahiti with Moeata (Tamari’i Poerava) and Tumata Robinson (Tahiti Ora). She has performed professionally with the traditional Tahitian dance group Kei Tawhiti in Papeete. Nanave has earned her certification of Ori Tahiti through level 5 at the Conservatoire Artistique de la Polynésie in Papeete, and plans to complete all 6 levels. She very much enjoys being involved in her culture and is happy to be able to share it with others in a fun and exciting way. In other dance training, Nanave has taken ballet, jazz, modern, and hip hop through college courses and performed for 3 years with Bellevue College’s Eastside Moving Company. She is also a licensed Zumba instructor, and MixxedFit instructor/National Trainer.
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