New Zealand Bride Moved to Tears by Wedding Haka
The footage of a New Zealand bride moved to tears by the haka performance at her wedding has become viral after being watched more than 19 million times.
Video of the Maori dance at the wedding of Aaliyah and Benjamin Armstrong is being widely shared on social media.
Aaliyah Armstrong, 21, said the haka was a sign of respect from her husband’s best man and family not, as some have commented online, an attempt to intimidate him, the BBC reported.
A haka – with its shouting, body-slapping and exaggerated facial expressions – is used in traditional Maori culture as a war cry to intimidate the enemy, but also to welcome special guests and at celebrations.
The video was filmed at Aaliyah and Benjamin Armstrong ‘s wedding reception in Auckland last week.
In it, they watch with emotion as the groomsmen and guests surprise them with a heartfelt performance of the traditional dance, before joining in themselves.
Women do not normally perform the haka in Maori culture but Aaliyah Armstrong said they can do at weddings.
The nearly three-minute video ends with the couple emotionally embracing the performers.
The haka was organized by the 23-year-old groom’s best man and was led by his older brother. It was filmed by her cousin’s production company.
Aaliyah and Benjamin Armstrong, who live in Auckland, posted the video for friends and its popularity has taken them by surprise.
Comments on social media have focused on the strong emotions that the video arouses.