A night of magic at New Brighton Library

At the launch
One way to get around the lack of venues in Christchurch is to invite musicians to a library, clear out all the furniture and books and fill it with sound and crowds.

The New Brighton Library was transformed last Sunday and over 300 people enjoyed a magical night at the library listening to local talent, kicking off New Zealand Music Month in Christchurch.

People from all over the city came to hear Lawrence Arabia, Marlon from Unfaithful Ways and the Silencio Ensemble.
As they entered, the mesmerizing and organic sounds of the Silencio Ensemble filled the library. This performance is a forerunner to their upcoming Joan of Arc project where they will perform a soundtrack to the silent movie from the 1920s at the Christchurch Art Gallery.

Next up were Marlon and Tim who did a line-up of Johnny Cash-inspired solos and collaborations.

This was followed by Lawrence Arabia who held the crowd captive for nearly an hour with his original Kiwi blend of music, an amazing falsetto voice and fantastic whistle.

The cool thing about having live music at the library is that you can bring your kids and of course there are books and more to be enjoyed at the same time. Adding to the ambience was the view of the colourful light display under the pier (which happens every evening)  and the mellow swell of the white-topped waves dancing under the moonlight.

Find out more about New Zealand Music Month:

Letter to Hazel, 12/12/1914, from Zeitoun, Cairo

For Records and Archives Week we’re on the theme of kai. Kiwi soldiers overseas had some interesting food experiences, as this letter to Hazel in December 1914 from Cecil Malthus shows:

Letter to Hazel, 12/12/1914, from Zeitoun, Cairo

The text reads, in part: “The restaurants are delightful, and I can’t understand why there are none in New Zealand. You can sit either indoors or out among the trees, and can get a light meal and very good beer and wine, all cheap.”

You can read more letters from Cecil Malthus to his future wife, Hazel, on our website: Cecil Malthus : World War I papers [letters, telegrams, documents].