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Tufuga Kilikihoa: The art of Niue nose flute

Fakaalofa lahi atu kia mutolu,

In celebration of Niue Language Week (12 – 18 October 2015) we have installed three kilikihoa (nose flutes) in a display case in our Te Kākano Information Centre located in the west wing of the Māori Gallery.  Ioane Aleke Fa’avae selected these works in order to celebrate tufuga kilikihoa, the art of Niue nose flute and wrote both the Niue and English labels. 

Kilikihoa (Nose flute). Niue. Gifted, Mr H. G. Cornwall. 1931.

Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tāmaki Paenga Hira. AM 16865.

Kilikihoa

Ua e akau ne tufuga aki e kilikihoa. Ko e kaho mo e pao. Ko e tupuna fakamui ne kua mole atu ne iloa ke fafagu e kilikihoa ko Talaiti Posini mai Vaiea Fatiau. Kua liu malagaki mai e tufuga mo e fafagu he kilikihoa ke he tau fakaakoaga ne fakahoko he Taoga Niue. Na fa fafagu he tau fuata e kilikihoa ke lamalamati aki e tau falala he tau vahā fakamua. Kua humelie mo e mahofihofi ni e haana a tagi ka logona he tau kulakukele.

Ko e tau kilikihoa nei foaki mai ke he Fale Taoga ha Okalana. Taha ne foaki mai e ia ko Misi Koneuela he 1931. Ko e taha Komisina Nofomau ki Niue he (1907–1917). Taha mai ia Misi Hiki, ne fakatau mai he Fale Taoga ha Okalana he 1891. Tufuga mai e kilikihoa nei mai he akau ko e pao. Ko e kilikihoa ne foaki mai e Mrs E Paramore (Te Puke), tolu e pū ka e taha ne nakai la oti mitaki he vilo. Hā hā ki tua he tino he kilikihoa nei kua tohia ki ai e kupu “TIME”.

Kilikihoa (Nose flute). Niue. Purchased, Mr Hicks. 1891.

Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tāmaki Paenga Hira. AM 11682.

Kilikihoa (Nose flutes)

The kilikihoa or nose flute of Niue is made out of kaho (bamboo) or pao (a hardwood, Ochrosia parviflora). The last surviving Niue elder who knew how to play the nose flute was Talaiti Posini from Vaiea Fatiau, who passed away over a decade ago.  The art of kilikihoa has been revived through workshops by Niue’s Department of Cultural Heritage – Taoga Niue. In former times young men would play the nose flute to woo the object of their affections. 

Two of these kilikihoa were gifted to Auckland Museum. The one from Mr Henry G Cornwall, Resident Commissioner to Niue (1907–1917), was gifted in 1931. The kilikihoa gifted by Mrs E Paramore (Te Puke) has three holes drilled in it, one of which is incomplete, and the word “TIME” has been engraved on the outside. The kilikihoa from Mr Hicks, which is made of hardwood, was purchased by Auckland Museum in 1891. 

Kilikihoa (Nose flute). Niue. Gifted, Mrs E. Paramore. 1940.

Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tāmaki Paenga Hira. AM 25755.

Kia mafola e faahi tapu.