Rapa Nui: Kari-Kari

The Kari-Kari ballet is a traditional dance belonging to the Rapa Nui people of Easter Island. The dance is a visual representation depicting the history and culture of the people and the land they inhabit. Scenes focus on everyday life to remind and teach the world about the long-forgotten responsibilities and tasks that are no longer applicable in today’s world. Great displays of strength illustrate how the Rapa Nui have overcome the hardships of war and destruction to parts of their culture throughout history. The stories told use music, body movements and instruments. Men and women also wear traditional garb. The intervention of the Catholic faith has ultimately led to the extinction of customs and rituals once practiced. Dancing is an important tool in helping revive and preserve these practices. Without this art, many traditions would otherwise become lost forever.