Father welcomes son at the airport with Māori Haka in viral video
A video of a father welcoming his son at the airport with an emotional Haka, a ceremonial dance of the Māori people, has warmed countless netizens’ hearts.
The now-viral clip, shared by suspended Reddit account u/PM_ME_LADY_SHOULDERS on the subreddit r/MadeMeSmile in late August, starts with a barefoot father rhythmically slapping his thighs before he begins chanting as his son watches a few feet away.
People at the airport can be seen gathering around the man as he shouts and chants to welcome his son back.
After the performance, spectators clap and cheer at the heartwarming gesture while the two men embrace.
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“Father performs the Haka as he meets his son at the airport,” the Reddit user wrote about the video. “There was not a dry eye in the house.”
The heartwarming clip has received over 34,100 upvotes and more than 1,000 comments, with one user writing, “It is my understanding that the Haka is also performed as a welcoming gesture, or to honor someone. To me, a Haka is very emotional and very beautiful. I feel privileged to be able to observe.”
“Every time I come across a Haka being performed it’s a really emotional experience. It’s beautiful,” another user wrote.
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The Haka, which was traditionally used by warriors while preparing for battle, is now performed during other important occasions, such as weddings.
New Zealand’s men’s national rugby union team, commonly called the All Blacks, helped the Haka “Ka Mate” go mainstream by performing it before almost all of their matches since 1905. The renowned Haka was composed by Māori war leader Te Rauparaha in 1820 to inspire his tribe of warriors in the face of their rivals. “Ka Mate” is justone of several Haka variations that have been performed throughout the centuries.
The tradition of performing a Haka at sporting events can reportedly be traced back to 1888 when the New Zealand Native football team used it for the first time.
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Outside of sports, DC star Jason Momoa notably performeda surprise Haka to honor Polynesian culture during the Hollywood premiere of “Aquaman” in December 2018. Months after that, model Ashley Grahamdrew controversy for asking Momoa to perform a Haka move while on the red carpet at the 2019 Oscars.
Featured Image via u/PM_ME_LADY_SHOULDERS / r/MadeMeSmile
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