Talanoa Mau is the historic coming together of artists, leaders, doers and thinkers from around the world and Aotearoa/New Zealand to give voice to new or unheard ideas, and stimulate critical discussion on what it means to be human in today’s world.

We hear from artists Peter Sellars (US), Faustin Linyekula (DRC), Neo Muyanga (SA), Chiké Frankie Edozien (NIG), Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal (NZ), Jahra ‘Rager’ Wasasala (NZ), Coco Solid aka Jessica Hansell (NZ), Alistair Fraser (NZ), Kara Jackson (US); Tina Makereti (NZ), Chigozie Obioma (NIG) and Kahumako Rāmeka (NZ); leaders and public thinkers His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta’isi Efi (SAM), Pania Newton (NZ), Golriz Ghahraman MP (NZ), Tāmati Kruger (NZ), Patrick Snedden (NZ), Te Kaurinui Parata (NZ), Hon. Luamanuvao Dame Winnie Laban (NZ), Dame Anne Salmond (NZ), Leali’ifano Dr Albert L Refiti (NZ), Jade Kake (NZ), Lana Lopesi (NZ), Emalani Case (NZ), and Ruby Judson (NZ) and Dr Liana MacDonald.

We invite you and your organisation to listen and consider the perspectives of artists, academics, historians, indigenous voices and leaders from Aotearoa and around the world. You will leave inspired, changed and ready to see the future in a new light.

The ticket is a two-day pass. You will hear from all of the speakers listed above, and more. You will have opportunities to network with fellow delegates and talk with our speakers. Tickets include lunch each day and refreshments.

Make the pilgrimage to Pōneke, Te Whanganui-a-Tara, and be part of an historic meeting that places art at the centre of urgent public decision making, carving a path to our future.

"The future of our humanity and our existence lies in our binding together to create the conditions for beauty and truth to be born. Talanoa mau literally means speaking truth." Lemi Ponifasio.

Download the full programme here.

The application period for Artist Scholarships has now closed.



Earlybird Registration (until 14 February): $489

Regular Admission: $549

Buy 2+ and save: For groups of 2-10, the first ticket is $549 with subsequent tickets at $499

Tickets for Talanoa Mau are available through iTICKET. Booking fees apply. To book, click Register.


Presenters at Talanoa Mau

Salā Lemi Ponifasio, Curator of Talanoa Mau

Director, Choreographer, and Artist

Lemi Ponifasio

Peter Sellars

Visionary Opera and Theatre Director

Peter Sellars 1 © Ruth Walz.jpg

His Highness Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta’isi Efi

Samoa's former Head of State

His Highness Tui Atua Tamasese Ta'isi Efi

Dame Anne Salmond

Preeminent New Zealand Historian, Professor, and Writer

ARTEFACT_Call of the Huia_Anne Salmond_Akl War Memorial Museum.jpg

Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal

Composer, Author, and Consultant on Mātauranga Maori


Golriz Ghahraman MP

Politician and Member of Parliament


Kara Jackson

Writer and US Youth Poet Laureate

Kara Jackson.jpg

Coco Solid aka Jessica Hansell

Musician, Writer, Visual Artist and 2019 National Arts Foundation Arts Laureate


Alistair Fraser

Kaiwhakatangitangi a Ngā Taonga Pūoro / Taonga Pūoro practitioner


Tāmati Kruger

Māori advocate, Social and Political Analyst


Chigozie Obioma

Writer shortlisted for multiple Booker Prizes

Chigozie Obioma, photo by Jason Keith.jpg

Hon. Luamanuvao Dame Winnie Laban

Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Pasifika) at Victoria University of Wellington


Leali’ifano Dr Albert L Refiti

Research leader, Pacific spatial and architectural environment


Faustin Linyekula

Dancer, Choreographer and Theatre Maker


Pania Newton

Lawyer and Activist for Māori land rights

Pania Newton

Pat Snedden

Te Tiriti negotiator, Corporate Director, Not-for-profit leader in health and education

Pat Sneddan

Chiké Frankie Edozien

Writer, Journalist, and Professor at New York University

Chiké Frankie Edozien, photo by Victor Adewale.JPG

Te Kaurinui Parata

Carver and Environmentalist


Neo Muyanga

Composer and Musician


Jade Kake

Writer, Architect and Housing Advocate

Jade Kake.jpg

Jahra ‘Rager’ Wasasala



Lana Lopesi

Writer and Art Critic


Emalani Case

Pacific Studies Lecturer and Writer


Ruby Judson



Tina Makereti



Dr Liana MacDonald

Research Fellow, Victoria University of Wellington

Dr Liana MacDonald

Kahumako Rāmeka

MAU Wahine artist


“This is possibly one of the most unexpected and extraordinary line-ups I have seen for a conference in New Zealand. And as a leader of a profession that engineers better lives for New Zealanders, there’s no more important time to be musing and taking action on the future we want to create, with humanity at its core.”

Susan Freeman-Greene, CEO Engineering New Zealand, Talanoa Mau attendee

Conference Schedule

Talanoa Mau, curated by Lemi Ponifasio
Monday 24 and Tuesday 25 February 2020
Soundings Theatre, Te Papa

Talanoa Mau will be hosted by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal, an independent researcher, consultant and composer from Aotearoa New Zealand.

Monday 24 February 2020

08:00am - 08:30am: Registrations, Level 2

08:30am: Pōwhiri

Peter Sellars

09:45am - 10:30am: Refreshments

10:30am - 13:00pm: Courtney Johnston / Dame Anne Salmond / Jessicoco Hansell aka Coco Solid / Kara Jackson / Te Kaurinui Parata / Alistair Fraser

13:00pm - 14:00pm: Lunch

14:00pm - 15:45pm: Ruby Judson / Watene Moana Campbell / Tāmati Kruger / Kahumako Rāmeka / Pat Snedden / Dr Liana MacDonald

15:45pm - 16:15pm: Refreshments

16:15pm - 17:30pm: Chigozie Obioma / Tina Makereti / Questions and Discussions / Close of day one

17:30pm - 18:30pm: Own time

18:30pm- 20:30: Reception and exhibition preview of MAU: House of Night and Day by Lemi Ponifasio at Toi Art, Te Papa. Refreshments provided.

Tuesday 25 February 2020

08:45am: Theatre opens (please be seated by 09:00am)

09:00am - 11:00am: Le Afioga a le Tama-a-Aiga, His Highness, Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta`isi Tupuola Tufuga Efi / Vā Moana panel discussion: Leali’ifano Dr Albert L Refiti with Lana Lopesi and Emalani Case

11:00am - 11:30am: Refreshments

11:30am - 13:00pm: Art Creation in Conflict Zones panel discussion Golriz Ghahraman with Faustin Linyekula, Chiké Frankie Edozien and Neo Muyanga

13:00pm -14:00pm: Lunch

14:00pm - 15:20pm: Jade Kake / Leali’ifano Dr Albert L Refiti / Hon. Luamanuvao Dame Winnie Laban / Jahra ‘Rager’ Wasasala

15:20 - 15:50: Refreshments

15:50pm - 17:30pm: Questions and Discussions / Lemi Ponifasio / MAU - Upu Taumavae / Closing Karakia

For further enquiries please contact ticketing.