Tag Archives: Jesse Mulligan

Happy St Patrick’s Day!

To get in the spirit for Ireland’s national day you can listen to this “Spectrum” radio documentary from 1996, about Auckland’s St Patrick’s Festival.

 

Dancers at the Irish National Feis, Kilbirnie, Wellington - Photograph taken by John Nicholson. Dominion post (Newspaper) :Photographic negatives and prints of the Evening Post and Dominion newspapers. Ref: EP/1986/5281/18-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23030957
Dancers at the Irish National Feis, Kilbirnie, Wellington – photograph taken by John Nicholson. Dominion post: photographic negatives and prints of the Evening Post and Dominion newspapers. Ref: EP/1986/5281/18-F. Alexander Turnbull Library http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23030957

 

Or tune in to Sarah Johnston talking to RNZ’s Jesse Mulligan about Irish recordings in our Sound Collection.  

Maori Battalion feature

Celebrating Christmas in the Desert, 1942

- By Sarah Johnston (Client Services Coordinator – Radio, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision)

Silent Night – Tapu te Po (Christmas at NZ General Hospital, 1942, ref. 17321)

 

A recording of the carol “Silent Night” or “Tapu te Po,” sung in te reo Māori and English by men of the 28th Māori Battalion in North Africa in 1942, is one of the many Christmas taonga held in the Sound collection of Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision.

It is part of a series of recordings made by the National Broadcasting Service’s Mobile Recording Unit, in a New Zealand military hospital.  The men singing on the recording had been wounded in the Battle of El Alamein in October and November 1942, and were gathered together by Nurse Wiki Katene (Ngāti Toa) of Porirua, to make the recording which would be broadcast back in New Zealand at Christmas. Continue reading

wine

“Cheers!” – How Radio has Covered the Growth of Our Export Wine Industry

Blenheimer, Marque Vue, Cold Duck. If you are over a certain age those names of early New Zealand wines may bring back a few memories. In her regular segment on RNZ, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision client services coordinator Sarah Johnston talked to Jesse Mulligan about recordings in the sound collection of Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision that look back at the early years of New Zealand’s export wine industry.

Couple drinking wine. K E Niven and Co :Commercial negatives. Ref: 1/2-225711-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22810341
Couple drinking wine. K E Niven and Co : Commercial negatives. Ref: 1/2-225711-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22810341

 

The earliest mention in our sound collection of a possible wine export industry,  comes from the magazine-style programme “Radio Digest” in 1955.  A correspondent in Britain reports on Australian moves to export wine to the UK – and hints that this could be something we could try – one day…

 

“Radio Digest,” no. 299, 6 February (ref. 38599)

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Protesters in Hamilton during a demonstration against the 1981 Springbok tour - Photograph taken by Phil Reid. Dominion post (Newspaper) : Photographic negatives and prints of the Evening Post and Dominion newspapers. Ref: EP/1981/2599/3-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22551319

Covering the Tour

- By Sarah Johnston (Client Services Coordinator – Radio, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision)

Thirty-five years ago this week we were in the middle of New Zealand’s “winter of discontent,” with the country embroiled in the 1981 Springbok Tour. Protests took place all over the country,  with many families divided between rugby fans – who thought sports should not be concerned with political issues – and those who felt New Zealand should be joining the international boycott and cutting all sporting ties with apartheid-era South Africa.

Radio New Zealand news and sports reporters were in the thick of it, as the conflict between police, protestors and rugby fans became more and more heated. You can hear me talking to RNZ’s Jesse Mulligan about some of the archived sound recordings from those turbulent times held in the radio collection at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, or read more and find links to the recordings below.

Protestors and police officers at Rugby Park, Hamilton - Photograph taken by Phil Reid. Dominion post (Newspaper) : Photographic negatives and prints of the Evening Post and Dominion newspapers. Ref: EP/1981/2596/10-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23098586
Protestors and police officers at Rugby Park, Hamilton – Photograph taken by Phil Reid. Dominion post (Newspaper) : Photographic negatives and prints of the Evening Post and Dominion newspapers. Ref: EP/1981/2596/10-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23098586

 

In the tour opener at Gisborne, anti-tour protesters had managed to break through a perimeter fence but were prevented from occupying the field and disrupting the match. Three days later, at Rugby Park in Hamilton on July 25,  Waikato prepared to take on the Springboks. Over 500 police officers were present in the city but the protest planners had also been busy, buying more than 200 tickets for the game to ensure that protesters could make their presence known. As it was a Saturday, more people were able to protest, and around 5,000 gathered to march on Rugby Park. Shortly before kick-off, RNZ’s sports commentators, the late Graeme Moody and John Howson found themselves covering the action as protestors broke down the fence and made their way onto the field.

 

Report on Protests at Rugby Park (25 July 1981) 

  Continue reading

Huia birds, male and female. Harris, Esme, fl 1980-1981 : Photographs. Ref: PA11-046-11. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23081750

Te Karanga a te Huia | The Call of the Huia

By Sarah Johnston (Client Services Co-ordinator, Radio – Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision)

If you have been to see Taika Waititi’s film The Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016) you will remember the scene in which the two main characters discover the long-believed-extinct huia bird, while they are deep in the bush.

In real life, the last authenticated sighting of a huia is generally believed to have been in 1907 in the Tararua Ranges, north of Wellington. Sound recording technology was in its infancy when the huia died out, so there are no recordings of the actual bird call itself. However, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision’s sound collection holds several recordings about the huia, including eyewitness descriptions of it – and a re-creation of the bird’s call by a man who remembered them well. You can hear me talking about these recordings with RNZ’s Jesse Mulligan here or listen to the full recordings below.
 

Huia birds, male and female. Harris, Esme, fl 1980-1981 : Photographs. Ref: PA11-046-11. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23081750
Huia birds, male and female. Harris, Esme, fl 1980-1981 : Photographs. Ref: PA11-046-11. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23081750

 

The sad tale of the huia holds a great deal of fascination for many people – both Māori and Pākehā, as well as people overseas. In my role as Client Services Co-ordinator, I handle requests from people who want to hear sound recordings from Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision’s collection. In the case of the huia, these might be ornithologists, academics interested in aspects of extinction, or artists and musicians inspired by the melancholy idea of being able to hear the call of the bird that has long been silenced.

This usually leads them to one particular recording, which is the re-creation of the huia’s call.

 

Re-Creation of Huia Calls (Hēnare Hāmana, 2YA, 1949)

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Māori waka hurdle race on the Waikato River at the Ngaruawahia Regatta. 1910.  Godber, Albert Percy, 1875-1949, Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22661780

Tūrangawaewae Regatta

The Waikato River at Tūrangawaewae was a hive of activity last weekend, with thousands of people turning out to watch and take part in the annual Regatta, which sees a variety of Māori waka racing on the river – from primary school children, right up to the mighty waka tauā, or war canoes. This was the 121st year the Regatta has been held, and over the years recordings of radio coverage of the event have found their way into the archives of Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. You can hear Sarah Johnston, our Client Services Coordinator – Radio, talking about them with RNZ’s Jesse Mulligan here, or listen to the recordings below.

Regatta on the Waikato River at Ngaruawahia, circa 1910. Price, William Archer, 1866-1948. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22846494
Regatta on the Waikato River at Ngaruawahia, circa 1910. Price, William Archer, 1866-1948. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/22846494

The Ngāruawāhia Regatta, as it was originally called, began in 1895 as a St Patrick’s Day holiday event. The 1902 Cyclopedia of New Zealand says it was started by Mr Wells, the local school headmaster, and in 1900 8,000 people attended [1]. The event was organised by both Māori and Pākehā to “promote and encourage aquatic sports and the preservation of ancient Māori events and customs.” It was a hugely popular entertainment, with special trains being chartered from Auckland to bring spectators down and paddle steamers bringing others up the river. At times as many as 20,000 people turned up for the regatta, which was soon supplemented with kapa haka, Highland dancing, sideshows and wood-chopping displays.

In 1947 the New Zealand Broadcasting Service Mobile Unit toured Waikato and recorded oral history interviews with elderly residents, several of whom recalled the regattas of their youth. A Pākehā resident of Huntly, George Shaw, talked about working in a general store, Friar Davies and Co., which did a brisk trade supplying Regatta visitors in the 1900s. From his description we can tell it was a big social event for the whole community, which required a new wardrobe.

Clip 1: George Shaw

From History of Huntly (1 January 1947)

George Shaw‘s recollections are of course, a Pākehā interpretation of Māori events – often the norm in broadcasting back in the 1940s. Continue reading

Children Apples

An Apple a Day….

By Sarah Johnston (Client Services Coordinator – Radio, Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision)
Image: New Zealand apples; Kidds O. Red 16. Good [Apple case label. 1940-60s]. Ref: Eph-B-FRUIT-1940/60-08. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23016982
Image: New Zealand apples; Kidds O. Red 16. Good [Apple case label. 1940-60s]. Ref: Eph-B-FRUIT-1940/60-08. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23016982

The early months of the year are harvest time in the Hawke’s Bay, Nelson, and other apple-growing regions of New Zealand – and there are several recordings in the Radio Collection of Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision that tell the story of our favourite fruit and the huge export industry that has grown up around it. You can hear me talking to RNZ’s Jesse Mulligan about the recordings or you can listen to the full recordings below.

In 1940, during World War II, the New Zealand apple harvest was unable to be exported in such quantities as usual, because of the war affecting international shipping.  So there were something close to a million extra cases of apples that needed to be consumed domestically! To get Kiwis eating more apples, radio promotions such as a national apple-pie recipe competition were held and school children were encouraged to take at least one apple with them to school every day. Another competition was held to find a song to promote apples, and it was won by Ivan Perrin, who came came up with new lyrics to an old tune [1].  Here is one version of his winning “New Zealand Apple Song,” performed by Theo Walters’ Personality Band. The female vocalist is not identified on the disc, but may be Jean McPherson, New Zealand’s “Sweetheart of the Forces.” 

The New Zealand Apple Song, Theo Walters’ Personality Band, 1940

A rendition of Perrin’s “Apple Song” was also recorded by the children of Wellington’s Lyall Bay School and became hugely popular. An article in The Listener in March 1940 printed the lyrics “in response to many requests” and noted the daily playing of the song at 8.15am on commercial ZB radio stations, along with the ringing of a school bell, had become “a Dominion-wide signal for school kiddies to be on their way” [2]. Sadly, the original Lyall Bay School recording no longer exists, although a performance was re-recorded for a school reunion in 2002. Continue reading