Some of the moves performed in shows now are more modern and flashy than traditional battle preparations. In the mid 20th century, the ancient traditions were commercialized and westernized. Favorite Add to Samoan Practice Fire Knife Custom Siva Afi Fire Dance Prop Spin Tool Learning ALOHABRUSHART.  These war clubs were often edged with the teeth of sharks, saw fish, swordfish, and other sea creatures. There were no towels used, only palm fronds and dry leaves. After that, for years he taught the dance and judged many contests in Samoa and other countries. It is probable that the danger of sharpened blades and the demand for multiple daily shows by top performers has caused the sharpened blade to disappear entirely from commercial performances. There’s even a Junior World Fire Knife Competition, which spotlights youngsters ranging in ages from 12 to 17. Driven westward from Aleipata, Upolu (where the Tu'i Tonga's birthday festivities were underway) to the coast of Mulifanua, the Tongan king and his bodyguards were cornered against the sea. It’s a tradition that has been passed from generation to generation, with each adding a new layer of style, boldness, and skill. They had wrapped both ends of their nifo-oti with dry palm sennit, which was then dipped into the fires to create a blaze on one end of the knife. In Samoan culture, all girls are taught from a young age to do this dance… Over time, the performing implement has changed. The Samoan fire knife dance is more than a popular spectacle that adds sizzle to a Hawaiian luau. The traditional Samoan dance is the siva. In 2010, the event expanded to four nights including a two-night, three-person final competition. $179.97. Along with performing, Freddie was also the teacher to the early fire knife dancers. The knives used by performers in American Samoa are still made of machetes, although they are often dulled for younger dancers. Samoan Fire Knife Dancers The grand finale of many Polynesian revues and luaus, the thrilling fireknife dancer astounds audiences with dazzling displays of athleticism, fire and danger. There are fire knife dance competitions held throughout the Pacific, including the annual World Fire Knife Dance Competition at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) on Oahu. It’s a tradition that has been passed from generation to generation, with each adding a new layer of style, boldness, and skill. Polynesian historians and authorities on Samoan cultural history state that the training of Toa warriors in the art of hand to hand combat with the Nifo Oti, the serrated-edged Samoan war club, came into prominence between 900 - 1200 AD. The Tongans who were not killed eventually boarded boats and left Samoa for good. When pronounced with the glottal stop, the word 'oti does not mean "death" at all; as a verb, 'oti means "to cut" as in 'otiulu ("hair cut"), or, as a noun, it refers to the domestic goat. He was rewarded for the notices and tourists he encouraged to visit his beloved homeland with the High Chief Title, A'e, from the head of state Malietoa Tanumafili II. The lava lava is sewn for a more contoured fit and is naturally worn short for increased Fire performance is a group of performance arts or skills that involve the manipulation of fire.Fire performance typically involves equipment or other objects made with one or more wicks which are designed to sustain a large enough flame to create a visual effect.. Fire performance includes skills based on juggling, baton twirling, poi spinning, and other forms of object manipulation. The ailao could be performed with any warclub, and some colonial accounts confirm that women also performed ailao at the head of ceremonial processions, especially daughters of high chiefs. There was fierce fighting all the way to the sea, whereon the Tu'i Tonga reached his superior navy vessels and called out to those on the land. The young man Tavita Vaoifi revived the Samoan ailao Siva Afi dance to eventually bring it home to Samoa from Hawai'i. For approximately 200 years, the Tu'i Tonga Talakaifaiki established a long-term residence in ata Safotu, Savai'i, Samoa. In his recently published book, Flaming Sword of Samoa: The Story of the Samoan Fire Knife Dance (2004, Watermark Publishing), Letuli revealed how he got the idea to add fire to his knife dance routine.  These war clubs were often edged with the teeth of sharks, saw fish, swordfish, and other sea creatures. A Samoan fire knife is used in traditional Pacific dance perfomances known as ailao. The baton twirler, then the fire-eater. Originally it was created by machete wrapped in tissue or towels on the ends. The fire knife is a well known traditional Polynesian (Samoan) cultural specific prop used by various ceremonial dancers. The Manu'a warriors were renowned throughout Eastern Polynesia for their strength and ferocity.. The crowd in America, which came to find out what he had discovered about Samoa, were frightened when they saw him whirling the fire. “I stared at the fire-eater, then the baton twirler. There was also a young girl practicing her baton twirling, and the baton had light bulbs attached to each end. The location for the Tu'i Tonga Talakaifaiki's upcoming birthday festivities was a beautiful famous stretch of beach in Aleipata, a region on the Eastern side of Upolu. Originally a knife dance using the Nifo Oti, it's grown into an activity that is done all over the world and eve Siva afi -- Samoan Fire Dance Since Uluao’s fire knife performance was such a success, the rest of the Polynesian dancing instruments such as poi, staff, and hoop were quickly modified to become fire-dancing toys. The Siva Afi was originally performed with the Nifo Oti, which was very dangerous. by:Trick Concepts 5.0 out of 5 stars 1. Mauga Mu home of the world reknown Samoan fire knife dance champion, Mikaele Oloa and his family! MAUGA MU: The Fire Knife Dance Club. The Expulsion of The Tu'i Tonga Talakaifaiki (King of Tonga) & The Birth of Malietoa (King of Samoa), The Birth of Siva Afi. He eventually returned to Samoa to bring back this part of the Samoan Culture that was unheard of until he performed. From shop Kpohana. Then, they utilized their nifo oti, which have remained the same design for the last millennia as those favored when the Samoans were actually head hunters, to behead the victim, while the hook carried the trophy. The Fire Knife Dance by devinsupertramp Says event founder Pulefano Galeai, “This unique event combines great athletic skill, unflinching bravery and ever-present danger to bring out the best in these competitors. The modern fire knife dance has its roots in the ancient Samoan exhibition called ailao – the flashy demonstration of a Samoan warrior's battle prowess through artful twirling, throwing and catching, and dancing with a war club. One common claim is that the word "nifo'oti" means "tooth of death", but this is not linguistically accurate as Samoan syntax places the modifier after the subject; according to Samoan grammar, the term "nifo'oti" would actually mean "dead tooth", hardly as intimidating as the former translation. From shop Kpohana. This story struck him deeply, because he had never heard of this from his elders. The “father” of the Samoan Fire Knife Dance was 84. Pork is the most popular meat eat… On Sundays, large meals are cooked in the umu and served to all family members. Although today many commercial performers perform the dance with short staffs or knives without blade, this is not authentic fire knife dance and is unacceptable in Samoan cultural practices except for training purposes. As night set in, the Festivities and party progressed, more "bush gin" was consumed, and the Samoan warriors "performed" for the king. It’s a tradition that has been passed from generation to generation, with each adding a new layer of style, boldness, and skill. The three brothers and their nephew eventually lead a wide-scale campaign of civil disobedience, which ultimately escalated into the military overthrow of Talakaifaiki. 5 out of 5 stars (60) … The Samoan fire knife dance is more than a popular spectacle that adds sizzle to a Hawaiian luau. The towels are set afire during the dances, hence the name. Slow and fluid, the siva is a graceful storytelling dance that is traditionally performed by a young woman. Their exhibitionists would almost rather die than seek medical care for injuries incurred while performing. Local high schools showcase their Samoan cultural skills in chiefly oratory, cultural games and in the song and dance presentation. In 2007, the championships were expanded to welcome competitors in a duet category and a women's category. After many cuts, burns, and narrow escapes, he was able to perfect this dance, to the point where he performed it nightly at clubs and shows throughout not only the San Francisco area but the entire country. The Tongans had ruled parts of Samoa (Upolu and Savai'i) but were not able to conquer the Eastern Samoan Islands, namely Manu'a and Manono, whose warriors famously held off Tongan and Fijian invasions on numerous occasions. Eventually, the exposed portion was part of the handle. Samoa has a long history of Siva afi or firedancing. Rice, taro, and coconut are other staples of the diet. He was determined to incorporate this treasure into his island dance routine. Before the introduction of metals, the most common clubs that were wielded and displayed in the ailao fashion were elaborately carved heirloom clubs called anava. One more linguistic issue remains to be worked out in regards to 'oti (with the initial glottal stop) and "oti" (without the glottal stop). 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