As it is the case every year, the fire walk or umu ti at Mahana Park will open up the festivities with pomp and pageantry. Organized by the tahua Raymond Teriierooiterai Graffe, the authentic ceremony has been preceding the Heiva for over 60 years and gathers several hundred spectators enthralled by the intensity of such ancestral moment. The umu tirequires a long preparation of at least a week. First, one is to dig a hole deep enough to contain wooden elements and rocks, and about 6 meters long and 3 meters wide in size and 1.50 meter in depth. The den is then filled up with pieces of wood and rocks from Papeno’o valley, laid out on a dried-up-coconut-tree-leaves bed. Depending on the thickness of the wood, one must wait 24 to 48 hours for the umu ti to be ready.
When the evening sets in and further to rituals for the tahua only to make, the ritual starts with incantations. The public is given instructions then the volunteers are welcomed to follow the priest on white hot rocks which surface temperature may exceed 2000° Celsius. Such moment as if suspended in time will leave on each participant a peculiar and unforgettable impression.
Fire walk – umu ti
Wednesday 29 June 2016 at 6 pm
Single entrance fee: 3 000 Fcfp
Ticket sales at la Maison de la Culture
For more information contact Nini +689 87 78 54 75