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Broadcaster, MC, Reo Champion

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He’s an award winning television host, a reo-champion and role model for many and he’s also one of the most sought after emcees known for his charm, wit and professionalism at various events around the country and even abroad! 
Mātai Smith has graced the screens of Aotearoa for the past 27 years and says, “From children’s programmes to game-shows to current affairs to reality series, there probably isn’t a single television genre I haven’t been a part of!”
But says he’s always been more of a ‘light-entertainment’ kind of guy, hence he’s currently hosting the popular singing show, ‘Five Minutes of Fame’ on Whakaata Māori.
But Smith, now based in his home town of Tūranga-nui-a-Kiwa, Gisborne says whilst he has grown up and thrived in the realm of television, he’s been somewhat invigorated by becoming involved in iwi radio, where he is the current station manager as well as co-host for the popular morning 'Turanga Health Breakfast' show. “I just love the intimacy and instantaneity of it and being amongst my people, for me iwi radio is where it’s at!”
In June last year, Smith co-hosted the 'Mānawatia a Matariki' five-hour live simulcast from Te Papa Tongarewa which broadcast on all networks across Aotearoa and also attracted a huge global audience as well.   It won the coveted award for ‘Best Live Coverage’ at the recently held NZTV Awards 2023.
As we go to print, Smith is also gearing up to host his fifth “Te Matatini” four day live coverage for TVNZ and says,
"This one is going to be very special not only because we celebrate 50 Years of kapa haka excellence, but also because its been four long years since the last one owing to Covid! We’ve literally been starved of haka, so kia rite e hoa mā, he hākari hakahaka kei te haere!” (Get ready, a haka feast is about to be served!)

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