The Performing Arts Festival is held once every two years and is the biggest gathering of Maori. The winners will travel extensively to represent New Zealand in various cultural venues. Performers take it extremely seriously, practicing for many months, taking aerobic classes to get in shape, making their costumes, and raising money to pay for their travel expenses. Each group was from a different iwi or clan. It’s a bit like a Native American pow-wow, with what were once traditional songs, dances, and oral traditions becoming something competitive, and changing in the process. Many applied fake moko with marking pens and washed them off as soon as their stage time was over. One activist derisively termed the performers “part-time Maori."