Sema – Hannah Teipo
Cook Islands (Atiu & Aitutaki) / Nagaland (Sema Tribe) Musician & Singer
Postcards Unlocked #36
Growing up I found it hard to accept and fully embrace my artistry.
First generation NZ–born, I was very focused on being the best I could be in the papa’a world and attaining the prescribed level of “success” in order to take care of my family. Thinking back, I felt a lot of guilt for having a love of storytelling and music when my parents worked so hard to provide for our family in the world outside of my head. Penny dropped one day in 2014 when I rang my mum crying saying that I was miserable in law school. I remember she told me “We don’t know why you were studying law, but we thought you were happy and that’s all that matters”
For years I had tried to suppress what I love to make my parent’s “proud” when all they really wanted was for me to be happy. I’m not going to lie, most days I still question if this is the right thing to do but it’s kind of like a game now where I make art, surprise myself and just continue to have the audacity to make more art lol. I just released my first single a month ago, I still can’t believe it. It means so much to me because I fought against myself for years to just release anything.
I have been sitting on an E.P for a few years now, I’m hoping to defeat my boss level inner perfectionist again and share it soon but taking some time to sit inside the feeling of releasing my first piece of work. To think of all the ups and downs it took to get here and this is only the start of my journey. Madness…lol