Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Town Hall plaque marks site of composer’s home

Town Hall plaque marks site of composer’s Christchurch home

It is a little known fact that Douglas Lilburn, one of New Zealand’s best known composers, once lived on the Christchurch Town Hall site.

That is soon to change, when a Christchurch City Council funded plaque, marking where he lived, will be officially installed on Tuesday 2 March.

Councillor Anna Crighton, chair of the Council’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Committee, who will speak at the ceremony said, “Douglas Lilburn enriched lives and brought pleasure to many. This recognition of his extraordinary talent is not only warranted but overdue.”

The idea for the plaque came from Christchurch composer Philip Norman, who approached Councillor Barbara Stewart for help in bringing it to fruition. Dr Norman said he had always thought it was a “fantastic coincidence” that Lilburn had lived and worked in the area that is now part of the concourse near the Town Hall’s Ferrier Fountain.

“Lilburn is New Zealand’s premier composer and the Town Hall Auditorium Christchurch’s premier concert venue. It adds historical interest and colour to the site knowing that an internationally recognised composer wrote some of his best-known music there.”

Dr Norman said Lilburn was the first concert composer to try to capture the New Zealand environment in sound. “Most of his works, now regarded as successful in this, were either written in Christchurch or drew inspiration from the South Island,” he said.

Compositions written on the Town Hall site include the landmark Landfall in Unknown Seas set in 1942 to a poem by Allen Curnow and commemorating Abel Tasman’s 1642 sighting of New Zealand.

Dr Norman said the room, where Lilburn lodged during the late 1930s and through the 1940s, was at 175 Cambridge Terrace in a block of eight brick terraced houses. These were demolished and that stretch of CambridgeTerrace stopped, when construction of the Town Hall began in about 1970. Between 1934 and 1936, Lilburn studied for a Diploma in Music at the Canterbury University College; he spent three years at the Royal College of Music in London; and returned to Christchurch to work as a freelance composer through the 1940s.

From 1950 he lived in Wellington, where he lectured at Victoria University until his retirement in 1980. Douglas Lilburn NZOM died in 2001.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news