Panellist and artist profiles
Singer Annie Crummer is of Cook Islands/ Tahitian descent. She first made an impact with her show-stopping guest slot with Netherworld Dancing Toys on ‘For Today’ in 1985. From the late 80s she has been part of the very successful all female act When the Cat’s Away. She released her first solo album Language in 1992 and followed it with Seventh Wave in 1996 before turning her hand to musicals with roles in Rent and Ben Elton’s Queen-inspired show We Will Rock You. In 2011 she won the Senior Pacific Artist award at Creative NZ’s Arts Pasifika Awards.
Founded in 1996 by two school friends Brotha D and Andy Murnane from the notoriously tough streets of the Polynesian community South Auckland, Dawn Raid's name has its roots in a long history of political upheavals and injustice against the Polynesian people in New Zealand during a period of time called the Dawn Raid Era of the early 1970s.
Oscar Kightley was born in Samoa and immigrated to New Zealand with his mother when he was four years old. Oscar first recognised his ability to make people laugh when he was a school boy.
Oscar is one of the Naked Samoans, who've taken their anarchic brand of comedy around the country and even to Scotland. With the Naked Samoans and Firehorse Films, he completed the fifth series of bro'Town in 2009. Oscar co-wrote bro’Town with David Fane, Mario Gaoa and Shimpal Lelisi and is well known for his voice over character, Vale.
Tigilau Ness is a Niuean New Zealand activist and reggae artist, and performs as Unity Pacific. Ness is a political activist and first generation Pacific Island New Zealander.
In May 2009, Ness was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the fifth Pacific Music Awards in Auckland, New Zealand in recognition of more than 30 years in the music industry.
He was involved in founding the Polynesian Panthers, a Polynesian rights group modelled after the Black Panthers.
Annie Crummer with Special Guest Papa Will Crummer
Will Crummer is a living Pacific treasure: a master singer and encyclopaedia of Polynesian song. The father of New Zealand singing star Annie Crummer, Will was born in the small village of Turangi in the Cook Islands, where he grew up surrounded by music: the singing of his mother, his grandfather’s wind-up gramophone, the ukuleles and handmade percussion of the local string bands. And there was the radio, which brought him exotic voices from across the seas: Nat ‘King’ Cole, Jim Reeves, Pat Boone and Elvis Presley were a few of his favourites.