Christchurch City Libraries blog hosts a series of regular podcasts from New Zealand’s only specialist human rights radio show Speak up – Kōrerotia. This show is created by Sally Carlton.
Join Rodney Bell (internationally-renowned wheelchair dancer and founding member of Touch Compass), Lyn Cotton (Founder and Artistic Director of Jolt Dance Company) and Jo Casey (Regional Programmes Coordinator (Christchurch) at StarJam) in a beautiful and uplifting discussion on the benefits of dance and performance for people perceived as having disabilities.
Part I: Why do you do what you do?
Part II: The benefits of dance – health and wellbeing, social, identity
Part III: The benefits of performance for dancers and audience – visibility, confidence, self-worth; performance as a human right
Part IV: What would you like to see happen in NZ in terms of dance and disability?
Christchurch City Libraries blog hosts a series of regular podcasts from specialist human rights radio show Speak up – Kōrerotia. This show is created by Sally Carlton.
Guests Rakesh Naidoo (Strategic Advisor Race Relations at the Human Rights Commission), Archna Tandon, and Jane Buckingham (University of Canterbury historian) discuss Indian migration to and settlement in New Zealand across the centuries.
Part I: History of Indian migration to and settlement in Aotearoa, including changes to immigration policy and its effects; key drivers for Indian migration; Indian international students
Part II: Being ‘Indian’ in New Zealand vs being ‘Punjabi’ etc in India; navigating multiple identities in multiple contexts
Part III: Factors that can enable and hinder successful settlement
Paul Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber grew out of a request from choreographer and dancer Léonide Massine in 1940 for music for a ballet. While the project was shelved, the completed piece has since been adapted for ballet productions and is equally powerful as a standalone work.
Prokofiev’s rich and multi-layered Violin Concerto No. 2 was his last work written in Europe before his return to the Soviet Union. It makes full use of the instrument, with intoxicating contrasts in tone, colour, melody, and rhythm and is the perfect fit for the virtuosic skills of NZSO Concertmaster Vesa-Matti Leppänen.
Inspired by his homeland, Tchaikovsky’s bold Fifth Symphony came 10 years after his Fourth and divided audiences at its premiere. It is bursting with unforgettable melodies and lush orchestration, making it one of the great works of the Romantic tradition. Under the baton of Maestro de Waart, the NZSO will perform it in all its glory.
I recently read an article about Marie Antoinette’s jewels been auctioned, which got me thinking about how far back our newspaper archives go and I thought try Proquest Historical Newspapers which has The Guardian (1821-2003), The Observer (1791-2003); Irish Times (1859-2010); Weekly Irish Times (1876-1958). So I simply put in “Marie Antoinette” in the search terms to see what I would get, I then re-ordered my search so I got the oldest items first and voilà, there in my search results was the Trial of Marie Antoinette and the Execution of the Queen of France, all from 225 years ago.
Trial of the Queen
The Observer published this article about the trial and execution of Marie Antoinette about 10 days after her execution.
This article includes commentary of the day some transcription from the trial including –
On Tuesday morning at nine o’clock, she was conducted in a private coach by Henroit, Commandant of the National Force of Paris, to the Revolutionary Tribunal. The people lined the streets, through which she passed, and repeatedly exclaimed “Vive la Republique!” …
The Greffier read the Act of Accusation as follows:
Marie Antoinette, widow of Louis Capet, has, since her abode in France, been the scourge and the blood sucker of the French.
Nothing like sorrow or pity for the Queen’s fate was shown by the people, who lined the streets, through which she had to pass. On her arrival at the place de la Revolution, she was helped out of the carriage, and ascended the scaffold with seeming composure. She was accompanied by a Priest, who discharged the office of Confessor, and gave her absolution,before she was ﬁxed to the fatal machine. She was in a half-mourning dress, evidently not adjusted with much attention. Her hands were tied behind her back, she looked around, apparently without much terror; her body being then bent forward by the machine,the axe was let down, and at once separated the head from the body. After the head was displayed by the Executioner, three young woman were observed dipping their handkerchiefs in the streaming blood of the deceased Queen. They were taken into Custody.
Not Just for kids, it could also be for nostalgic adults, especially if you were a fan of The Electric Company or Sesame Street. I fondly remember the start of The Electric Company theme tune “Hey you Guuyyys!” I was also a huge Count von Count fan.(Possibly due to the NZ band Head like a Hole’s song 12). I am definitely going check out some of the clips of Bert & Ernie as I am curious as to whether they are more than just best friends. Whilst checking out Sesame Street, I got to see Cookie Monster and Oscar the Grouch both very entertaining what kid wouldn’t love a cookie munching maniac and grouchy green thing that lives in a trash can. I also loved the Muppets when I was a child so the collection from the Jim Henson Company also appeals, it has two seasons of The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss.
It could be possible you want some time out, and your small person to be entertained for a bit with something educational. Just for kids has thousands of videos and interactive games covering a huge range of subjects – reading, science, arts and maths, ABCs and 123s. The website is a kid-safe environment, all content reviewed, vetted and ad-free. Easy to use, fully responsive and mobile friendly, you can entertain your tamariki on the go. If Sesame Street or The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss is not for your child, they may like Franklin the Turtle, The Berenstain Bears or Arthur.
When Steely Dan’s Walter Becker died just over a year ago there was not an outpouring of grief like those public displays afforded to other recent celebrity deaths. However, in certain sections of the community his passing was as significant as the loss of Bowie, Prince and Lemmy. This community is largely filled with people who are of a certain age, malcontents and music snobs. I am proud to be part of this community.
As one half of Steely Dan, Walter Becker, along with Donald Fagen sold a whopping 40 million plus records, had hit singles that are still mainstays of “Classic Rock Radio” all while refusing to tour and maintaining a relationship with the press that could be best described as prickly. Their songs were sophisticated, drawing on jazz structures, top session players and offbeat, often subversive subject matter.
The studio was where Steely Dan were most comfortable creating classics, such as their 1977 album Aja, with a rotating cast of session musicians. In their relentless quest for studio perfection they tormented the most skillful musicians they could find with the highest of standards and multiple takes. All this quality control lead to Steely Dan being inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.
In Major Dudes Barry Hoskyns compiles interviews and articles from across their singular career starting from their early days as a brilliant but relatively conventional band – they did tour in the early days – to their retreat into the studio. Steely Dan went on hiatus after releasing Gaucho in 1980 and the solo albums recorded by Fagen and Becker during this period are also covered in this book. The book ends with coverage of their celebrated reunion tours (they visited Christchurch twice – in 2007 and 2011) and albums including the Grammy winning Two Against Nature.
The wit, wisdom and attitude of Fagen and Becker are captured in articles written by respected music journalists including Sylvie Simmons, Robert Palmer and Charles Shaar Murray. The pieces are taken from a range of respected music publications including MOJO, Uncut, Rolling Stone and NME.
This is a lovingly put together collection using pieces ranging from in-depth interviews and reviews to short puff pieces. Occasionally, a harsh or uncomprehending review is included, just to balance out the praise. Major Dudes is a treasure trove for those who love the band and a great place for the curious to start their journey with the great Steely Dan.
Looking for more about Steely Dan? Check out Rocks Back Pages for a treasure trove about Steely Dan and a host of other bands.
We have great native birds, and some don’t even fly. If you listen to Radio New Zealand we have the bird call every morning.
And on right now is the Bird of Year competition, last year the Kea won. New Zealand Geographic called them “the mad geniuses of the bird world” because of the way way the experiment with things just fun. A group of Kea were filmed setting off stoat traps using sticks, just to make them go bang.
I do like the Kea but this year I think I am going to vote for the Royal Spoonbill (Kōtuku Ngutupapa) because it is kinda goofy looking and it has random feathers that look like a weird hairdo and it is New Zealand’s only cutlery themed bird. Another bird with a good barnet (hairdo) is the Rockhopper Penguin, he looks like the hipster penguin. My kids want to vote for the Kōkako. They actually want to vote for the South Island Kōkako but can’t because it is officially extinct but there are rumours that they are still alive in the depths of the bush. There is a $10,000 reward if you manage to photograph one which might be the reason they want to go tramping.
What did the Bison say when his son left for College?
World Animal Day is on Thursday 4 October 2018. It is important to recognise our furry friends of the animal kingdom, and World Animal Day is all about raising awareness to improve animal welfare standards across the world.
World Animal Day was a concept originating with German writer and publisher Heinrich Zimmermann. He coordinated the first World Animal Day event in Berlin on 24 March 1925, and held it in the Sport Palace (Berlin Sportpalast) where over 5,000 people attended. Aside: Incidentally, the Berlin Sportspalast later proved a popular venue for party rallies and speeches during the rise of the Third Reich.
Four years later, in 1929, World Animal Day migrated to its current date of 4 October. Whilst involvement was initially limited to Germany, Switzerland, Czechoslovakia and Austria, Zimmermann lobbied hard to have World Animal Day recognised universally. In 1931 he achieved this goal when his proposal was unanimously accepted at a congress of the world’s animal protection organisations in Italy, and World Animal Day became recognised globally as it is today.
What is the significance of 4 October? This is the day of Francis of Assisi, the patron Saint of ecology. Two days before my birthday too, just in case husband is reading this (lol) and wants a birthday gift idea.
Endangered species are those plants or animals considered to be at risk of extinction. Contributing factors include loss of habitat (e.g. through deforestation), hunting, poaching, disease and climate change.
At present, critically endangered species include:
Black Rhinoceros – which is in fact grey, and has been poached to the point of near decimation. The black rhinoceros is sought after for its horn, which is used in traditional Chinese medicine and in the making of traditional dagger handles in Yemen.
Both the Eastern and Western Gorilla – the largest of the apes. The decline of the Western Gorilla is attributable to loss of habitat through deforestation and the Ebola virus, which wiped out a third of their population between 1992-2007. Eastern Gorillas – situated in the Virunga Volcanoes region, the Democratic Republic of Congo and parts of Uganda – face the poaching of their young, and are often caught in the crossfire of armed conflict occurring in and around their habitat.
The Northern Hairy-Nosed Wombat of Australia. One of the worlds rarest critters, these wombats declined due to drought and the introduction of livestock, decreasing their access to food. Recovery plans are in place, but the plight of the animal is grave.
Red Wolf – The red wolf roams the USA, and is threatened by loss of habitat due to agriculture, and being hunted to near extinction.
Sadly, this is merely the tip of the iceberg, and many of the world’s beautiful and exotic creatures are in imminent danger of slipping away forever. Just to think that in my lifetime we may bid adieu to the majestic tiger, is a terrible thought. And it’s not only animals who are heading for extinction, many of the earth’s plants, algae and fungi are also disappearing.
You can find information on the status of any animal on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, and Arkive also has some in depth coverage on conservation issues and the endangered species of plants and animals.
Quick Animal Facts
On a lighter note, here are some rather riveting animal facts in honour of World Animal Day:
An elephant creates around a tonne of poo every week. No more said.
Caterpillars have 12 eyes. That’s four more than a spider. How creepy of them.
Mosquitoes are attracted to feet that smell. Explains a lot.
Find out all you need to know about animals and the natural world through Christchurch City Libraries’ impressive selection of eResources. Here are just a few, click on the links to find out all about your favourite animals 🙂 :
I would recommend Adventures of A Young Naturalist, the exploits of British broadcaster David Attenborough, and any of his groundbreaking and educational documentaries about the natural world which you can borrow for FREE at Christchurch City Libraries (in case you hadn’t heard, documentaries are now free at our libraries!).
Some of our latest animal titles:
You will also find animal mags online through our eMagazine resource RBdigital:
What kind of monster could resist that face? Reading to Dogs sessions are designed to provide a relaxed, non-threatening atmosphere in which children may practice their reading skills and develop a love of reading. Our dogs are the beloved pets of the Christchurch City Council Animal Management team, and have all been trained and tested for health, safety and temperament. Our dogs:
Can increase a child’s relaxation while reading
Do not laugh, judge or criticise
Allow children to proceed at their own pace
Can be less intimidating than a child’s peers
Library staff and a dog handler will be present at all times to help facilitate the sessions.
Arion Farm Education Park
Note: Arion Farm Education Park is part of the National Trade Academy (NTA), which has been providing NZQA approved Animal Care, Agricultural, Horticultural and Equestrian training courses to people entering land-based industries for the past 14 years including pre-employment training for people of all ages.