Lisa Taouma

Lisa Gaoa (née Taouma) is a Samoan-born New Zealand writer, film director, and producer.

Lisa Gaoa
BornLisa Taouma
NationalityNew Zealander
Alma materUniversity of Auckland
Notable worksTala Pasifika
Notable awardsSpecial Recognition Awards (Arts Pasifika Awards)
SpouseMario Gaoa


Taouma grew up Faleasiu, Samoa and migrated to Dunedin, New Zealand, later moving to then Grey Lynn. She has an MA from the University of Auckland and lectures there on Pacific arts.[1]

Taouma is married to fellow writer and comedian Mario Gaoa.[2]


Taouma began writing for the screen in 1996, for Tala Pasifika, specifically the episodes Brown Sugar[3] and Talk of the Town.[4] She began working on Tagata Pasifika as a reporter and currently works as the show's senior director.[1]

In 2014 she launched Polynesian online community Coconet.[1]

Taouma has curated a number of exhibitions and written for scholarly publications on representation of Polynesia in art.[1] In 2002, as part of the Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art she curated Pasifika Divas, an interdisciplinary performance-based project at the Queensland Art Gallery.[5]

In the 2009 Qantas Film and Television Awards she was nominated in the Best Children's/Youth Programme category for her work on Polyfest '09.[6]

Taouma received the Special Recognition Awards at the 2015 Arts Pasifika Awards.[7]


Year Title Role Notes
1976–present Polyfest Producer, Director Television
1987–present Tagata Pasifika Director Television
1995 Tala Pasifika Writer Television
2001 Otara Market Director Television
2002 Chinks, Coconuts and Curry-munchers Subject Television
2003 Masina Samoa: Stories of the Malu Director Television
2005 Fa'afafine In Transit - Nothing to Declare Director Television
2008 ASB Polyfest 2008 Producer Television
2011–present Fresh Producer Television
2013–2014 Real Pasifik Executive Producer Television
2014 Taualuga Director Television
2016 Game of Bros Associate Producer Television


  1. "Lisa Taouma". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  2. Johnston, Martin; Collins, Simon (26 November 2010). "Look how we've changed - New Zealand 38 years on". NZ Herald. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  3. "Credits - Tala Pasifika - Brown Sugar". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  4. "Tala Pasifika - Talk of the Town". NZ On Screen. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  5. "Pasifika Divas". Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  6. "Qantas TV Awards finalists". The Big Idea. 10 August 2009. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  7. "Arts Pasifika Awards". Creative New Zealand. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
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