by Whitt Birnie

Ocean waves, tamed by outlying coral reefs, ripple ashore and gently land in the hand of an ‘Ori Tahiti dancer. These artists borrow from nature and everyday human activity to weave and create visual stories that stimulate the imagination. They offer to take your mind for a dance. Never pass up that chance.

Flamboyant branches for 'Ori Tahiti dancers

With a majestic roof of flowering flamboyant branches overhead, a group of visiting ‘Ori Tahiti dancers from Japan organize and prepare for their stage performances. Their long voyages are justified as a valuable commitment to cultural exchange, a respect for traditions and help build a useful learning experience for all those involved. Admirable.

WhittBirnie photo. Ori Tahiti

Directress Tumata Robinson arrives on cue to open the ‘Ori Tahiti Nui Competitions 2019, a Tahitian cultural event of the highest order.


These are just a few of many photos these actresses helped create. My gratitude to the models is infinite. When I look overhead at night and see the magnificent Orion Constellation, also known among astronomers and navigators as Ori, near the Pléiades, I think of these stars. I place these women on a very high pedestal indeed. Merci beaucoup.

PS.  A more complete version is available here:  ‘Ori Tahiti