Miss Hannah Tatana, who is well known as a contralto singer of great promise, achieved a further success in Wellington recently.
Making her first professional appearance in opera, she took the leading role in many of the performances of the New Zealand Opera Company's production of ‘Carmen’, alternating in this role with the visiting English singer Joyce Blackham.
This is the first time a Maori singer has taken a leading part in an opera in New Zealand. Her performance was most enthusiastically received; one newspaper critic wrote that it showed her to be ‘capable of great development in an operatic career for which this is a most encouraging debut’.
Miss Tatana comes from Taupo, where her parents live. She went to Queen Victoria School for Maori Girls in Auckland, and trained there as a singer. She had numerous successes in competitions, and last December sang the contralto solos in the Auckland Choral Society's production of the ‘Messiah’.
She attended Auckland Teachers' College, and taught in Auckland for a time. She has recently married Mr Alec Stappard of Auckland.