Library Archive

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Christchurch City Libraries
work PO Box 73045,
Christchurch 8154,
New Zealand.
workp: +64-3-941-7923

Library performers during May

Christchurch City Libraries is hosting more than 50 performances across its network in May. Below are profiles of the performers. See our events calendar for specific dates, times and venues.

Anneka Thwaites

Anneka ThwaitesAnneka is a Christchurch-based singer songwriter. Her music is an eclectic mix that draws on elements of singer songwriter, folk, country and rock, paired with intimate vocals and reflective lyrics. Originally a cabinetmaker from Blenheim, she moved south in 2006 to study commercial music at the Christchurch Jazz school and has recently gone on to release her debut album In The Pink.

Adam Willetts

SynthsAdam Willetts plays abstract psychedelic pop music using homemade analogue synthesizers and other electronics. He creates rich and immersive fields of sound with a fragile yet propulsive sense of momentum, carefully balancing elements of euphoric beauty with seething and unpredictable noise. Adam is an important figure in Christchurch's thriving experimental music scene and performs regularly around New Zealand and internationally, featuring alongside artists such as Dan Deacon, High Places, The Dead C, Rafael Toral, and Akio Suzuki.


BabelfishBabelfish is a local duo consisting of Tim Nash on guitar and Kerrin Brizzell on violin. They share singing duties and perform music in a variety of styles from folk to classical to light jazz as well as some gypsy music and originals penned by Tim. Audiences enjoy their eclectic style and variety of music, as well as the duo’s obvious joy and fun in playing music together. Their voices blend beautifully in lovely harmonies, and their playing is both energetic at times, and soulful and beautiful at others.

Carmel Courtney

Carmel CourtneyA singer-songwriter with alternative jazz influences, her husky voice entwines around quizzical lyrics with a nostalgic edge, accompanying herself on guitar, keys and sax.

She is currently working with DJ Max Maxwell. Their album "Where's the Fire" will be released in August 2009. Carmel lives in Lyttelton and manages Volcano Radio 88.5fm.

Caroline Joy

Caroline JoyA regular on the Christchurch gig scene, Caroline Joy entertains with her take on well-known pop songs and not-so-well-known originals. Caroline plays the piano to accompany her voice, with extra depth coming from the sultry backing vocals of Nikki Jerard. If you enjoy Norah Jones, Fleetwood Mac and Nina Simone, you're gonna love this!

Craig Smith

Local musician Craig Smith describes his original songs are “lyrical, thought provoking, from the heart and sometimes humorous”. He also has an impressive repertoire of covers under his belt which he performs in a cruisy, easy listening style. Craig Smith is a regular musical performer at libraries and can often be found busking in Cathedral Square or at Riccarton Market, a favourite with library patrons and shoppers alike.
Interview with Craig Smith
Craig Smith CDs


EllabyeElla Bye play an eclectic mixture of original R’n’B, Blues and Soulful Ballads with some covers from such artists as Lizz Wright, Eva Cassidy and Amy Winehouse. Recently they were one of the originals groups performing in the all female showcase called “My Lovelies” at Zinc Bar. The band is lead by singer-songwriter Lucy Boanas who has worked with the likes of Marcus Vanilau, Rare Shot Blue and Feather Weight Cuts and regularly performs with her 9 piece Blues Band, Blutopia. Guitarist Clayton Hiku, completes the line-up for this special acoustic set to celebrate New Zealand Music Month.

Fire Thief

Fire ThiefPatrice Harrex, Rob Tate and Allan Robertson make up the Christchurch trio Fire Thief.

They perform original acoustic rock compositions touching on the classic themes of heartbreak, hope and the optimist's search for Utopia. The band have recently completed work on their debut album Millions of Strangers. Read our interview with guitarist/vocalist Allan Robertson.


William Roud is currently studying Year 12 Music at Hillmorton High School. He writes:

Ghostwork“I got into writing songs and doing solo work, I think, by accident. It was only really ever something to keep me occupied when I wasn't doing stuff with a band, but in recent months I've tried to refine the style and come up with some personal stuff that I'm happy enough with to play live and maybe do some recordings later this year. Some of you may have seen ghostwork play late in 2008 or heard our recordings, and essentially the style is very similar in terms of mood, just with limited layering and dynamics. I use both electric guitar and acoustic for the set, depending on the song, and for this particular show it'll be a lot of arrangements of songs by bands and other solo artists that I love as well as a few of my own songs.” - Will

Helen Webby

Helen WebbyHelen Webby is Principal Harp of the Christchurch Symphony, as well as being an enthusiastic player of the celtic harp. As part of May Music Month she will perform a programme of traditional Irish and Scottish music on celtic harp, as well as a few other surprises. The concert at South Library will feature Helen and her talented young students.

Hugh Campbell and Jon Hooker

Hugh and Jon play instrumentals on steel string guitars, in a style known as 'fingerpicking'. This method lends itself perfectly to a wide range of music. Through many years of performance, they have developed a combined mastery of their craft, which is evident in the resonance and bell-like tones that emanate from their acoustic guitars. Their relaxed programme includes Popular songs, Blues and Ragtime and other melodic delights. Read our interview with Hugh Campbell

MusicianKeith Petch and Bob Heinz

Keith Petch and Bob Heinz have been part of the Christchurch music scene for many years. They both have a passion for the music of Django Reinhardt and will be playing music from the gypsy jazz repertoire.

Laurie Searle

Laurie SearleLaurie Searle is a full time performer and tutor. He began learning the Piano when he was 9 years old and started broadcasting on the radio when he was 15.

Laurie had his own trio for a number of years but now plays solo in clubs and restaurants.

During NZ Music Month he will be presenting a collection of light classical music and his own arrangements of popular songs.

Liz Weir

Liz WeirFor the past 15 years, Storyteller, Liz Weir has been using music and movement to promote literacy with preschool children. By combining words, singing and movement, Liz is able to promote oral and auditory learning in a fun, natural way. Join Liz and “Mitch The Monkey” for a session of stories, songs and movement.

Matt Allcutt

Matt AllcuttA graduate of the CPIT Jazz school, Matt has played guitar since the age of twelve and played piano and sung from a very young age. His solo style is a mixture of different styles, drawing on influences from artists such as John Mayer, Eric Clapton and Harry Connick Jr. He can be seen performing in many different venues in Christchurch such as Fat Eddie's, Dux De Lux, Toast and Aikmans.

Natural MagicNatural Magic Pirate Band

The Natural Magic Pirates have been entertaining children of all ages with their original music and puppet shows for over 20 years at kindergartens, schools and festivals of all kinds in England, Japan and New Zealand. They have produced four CDs and two DVDs. CDs and DVDs by Natural Magic in the library collection.

Papanui High School - three groups

ChoraleThe Papanui High School Chorale, lead by Annabel Harrold, has 23 members ranging from Year 9 through to Year 13. They perform throughout the year in the community’s churches and rest homes. Right now they are preparing for the National Big Sing Competition held at the Christchurch Town Hall early June.

Papanui High School JazzThe Papanui High School Jazz Ensemble, with sax, trumpet, trombone, drums, bass and piano, has been together only three months. The group is lead by Max Wilkinson, a Year 12 student, who was awarded New Zealand’s highest mark for his Grade 7 Trinity Guildhall trombone exam last year.

Papanhui High School ChamberThe Papanui High School Chamber Groups performing for this year’s NZ Music Month have been playing together since the beginning of the year, under the direction of Eva Schwanen-Lilley. With 5-8 musicians per group, from Years 9 to 13, instruments include violin, cello, and piano. They will be performing Brahms’ Hungarian Dance No. 5 and Die Biene (The Bee) by Schubert. The groups will combine to play Handel’s Arrival of the Queen of Sheba.

Rene Vink

Rene VinkRene Vink has been performing for 14 years as a classical and flamenco guitarist in a variety of settings from the Arts Centre to weddings, restaurants, and of course libraries. As well as classical and South American/Spanish pieces Rene also performs popular works by artists such as Elton John, Eric Clapton, Bread, UB40 and the Beatles to name just a few.

Sophia Bidwell and Jeremy Brownbrooke

Sophia Bidwell (accordion) and Jeremy Brownbrooke (fiddle, mandolin, banjo)are experienced tune specialists. They present original melodies and loving renditions of tunes from the Celtic and European traditions.

StringophiliaStringophilia - Violin with Cello

Christchurch Symphony Orchestra musicians, Cathy Irons (violin) and Tomas Hurnik (cello), play solos and duos from Bach to Prokofiev. Cathy, originally from South Africa has performed with South African and NZ orchestras and has released her CD Inspired with pianist Mark Secker. Czech Tomas is associate principal cello in the CSO, bringing with him international experience ranging from Malaysia (as principal cellist) and Europe to Japan. In Frankfurt he furthered his studies on baroque cello and has performed in several period chamber groups. Experience the richness and warmth of string sound as Cathy and Tomas play a selection of pieces including works from Stamitz, Prokofiev, Telemann and Bach. There may even be a nursery rhyme or two for the younger bookworms. Sit and enjoy or be serenaded as you browse the aisles.

Inspired: violin masterpieces and favourites


Tessa Grigg and Brian Ringrose of Tessarose have been making music and performing for young children for nearly 20 years. With 22 CD titles, and 2 DVDs they use the fun of music to encourage the development of physical and musical skills that children use when learning to read, write and do maths.

CDs by Tessarose

The Misty Jazz Duo or Quartet

The Misty Jazz Duo features two of Christchurch's up-and-coming jazz musicians. George Cook on alto saxophone has been playing for roughly 6 years and is strongly influenced by the great jazz saxophonists. George is currently studying at the CPIT jazz school along with Sam Blakelock. Sam has been under the tuition of such local greats as Bob Heinz and Harry Harrison for the past 5 years. Delivering fresh takes on jazz standards, the duo performs weekly at La Petite Croix in SOL square, as well as the Octagon restaurant.

Read our interview with Sam Blakelock on The Pulse.