Northland's future kapa haka superstars will take to the stage this weekend to battle for a place at a national competition.
The Te Tai Tokerau Primary Kapa Haka Regionals will see 13 groups from primary and intermediate schools around Northland perform at Whangārei's ASB Stadium on Saturday.
The top five teams from the biennial competition will go through to Te Mana Kuratahi competition in Waikato next year where they will compete against primary and intermediate schools from around the country.
Joby Hopa, chairman of the Waitangi Cultural Committee - which organises the event - said this is the level of competition where, for many, the love of kapa haka begins.
He said a lot of the students would go on to compete at a secondary level and then to the senior level.
"The flow on is really good. We know kapa haka is growing... They're the future superstars of kapa haka," he said.
Hopa said groups would have spent at least the last half of this year preparing for the competition, but some groups will have been practising the entire year.
The schools competing at the event are Hora Hora Primary School, Te Kāpehu Whetu, Manaia View School, Glenbervie School, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Kaikohe, Kamo Intermediate School, Whangārei Intermediate School, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Pukemiro, Kawakawa Primary School, Te Rangi Āniwaniwa and Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Te Rawhiti Roa.
Each group has a maximum of 30 minutes to perform seven items. Doors open at 8am with the first performance on at 9.30am and prizegiving scheduled for 6.30pm.
Entry is $10 for adults, $5 for students, $2 for children and free for under-5s.