Chinese Language Week 2019

Come along to the popular Chinese culture and language events during New Zealand Chinese Language Week! Experience Chinese culture with our programme of free events below:

1. Traditional Chinese music and dance

Experience a snapshot of Chinese culture and history through artistically presented dance, music, songs, martial arts, and calligraphy performances.  A beautiful blend of traditional and contemporary elements, and a fuse of western and eastern culture.  A wonderful show all will enjoy!
Brought to you by the China Cultural Centre in New Zealand, New Zealand Chinese Culture & Arts Association and Wellington City Libraries.

11:00am -12:00pm  Saturday 28 September

Massey University Theatrette, entrance E from Tasman Street
(The seats are limited so you are encouraged to reserve a seat to avoid disappointment.)

2. Dress up and take photos

After the first performance, there is a chance to dress up and take a photo while trying on the Chinese costumes. And you will also have the chance to take a photo with the performers.

Brought to you by the China Cultural Centre in New Zealand, New Zealand Chinese Culture & Arts Association  and Wellington City Libraries.

12:00am -12:30pm  Saturday 28 September

Massey University Theatrette, entrance E from Tasman Street

3. Dance and music performance

Cleverly designed choreography that combines contemporary and traditional dance and music, while showcasing the Chinese culture and language. Enjoy the show!

Brought to you by Wellington Chinese Language School and Wellington City Libraries.

2:00-3:00pm  Saturday 28 September

Massey University Theatrette, entrance E from Tasman Street
(The seats are limited so you are encouraged to reserve a seat to avoid disappointment.)

4.Moving between tongues – translating Chinese poetry into English

Yujing Liang and Chris Tse discuss translating Chinese poetry into English and how this can lead to the creation of new meanings. Both writers include English and Chinese Language in their own work and they will discuss this process.

12:10pm -1:00pm Tuesday 24 September
Te Ahuimairangi (Ground floor), National Library

5. Teaching and learning Chinese in New Zealand Schools

Three Mandarin Language Assistants (Confucius Institute) and three secondary school students who are currently studying Chinese will participate in a panel discusion. They will discuss their language learning experiences, hopes and motives.

12:10pm -1:00pm Wednesday 25 September
Te Ahuimairangi (Ground floor), National Library

6. Chinese knot tying workshop

Wai Ching Chan will lead participants so that they can learn Chinese knotting techniques. She will develop discussions with explore the knots as symbols for connection and we will be invited to consider what this means for tauiwi co-existing with multi-cultural communities.

12:10pm -1:00pm Thursday 26 September
Public programmes Room, Te Ahumairangi, National Library

 7. Read Chinese magazines on DragonSource

Read Sanlian weekly, Readers and thousands of Chinese magazines online 24/7 with DragonSource !



8. Learn to speak Chinese

Learn Chinese with Wellington City Libraries’ eBooks and eAudiobooks as well as Mango Languages . If you are keen to share your learning, participate in New Zealand Chinese Language Week’s 5 Days 5 Phrases challenge. You can find out more information by visiting the official website.


Research your Ancestry in August

To celebrate Family History Month, Wellington City Libraries is holding ‘Ancestry in August’, a series of events for anyone interested in learning more about researching their family history.   There are events for those who are just starting out to research family history and also for those who may already have some research experience.

A Public Talk: Wellington Local History Resources
Friday 3rd August, 12:30pm -1:30pm

Come along to the Central Library ground floor and listen to our local history expert, Gábor Tóth, as he gives an overview of some of the lesser known sources available to research ancestors who may have lived in Wellington. This talk is free and you don’t need to book.

An introductory tour:  Genealogy Resources
Friday 10th August, 10:00am – 11:30am

Join Gábor for a tour of the family history resources available at the Central Library.

Learn about how to begin your family history research and the strengths and weaknesses of each resource. The talk will conclude with morning tea, when Gábor will demonstrate some of the online resources and talk about finds he has made. There is no charge for this event but numbers are limited and registration is required.
** UPDATE: This tour is now fully booked **

Preserve and research your family history
Tuesday 14th, Wednesday 22nd and Friday 31st
10:00am – 4:00pm

Register to reserve a librarian: for the final three weeks of ‘Ancestry in August’ we have some times that will be available for you to book in with a librarian to help you with family history research. During your appointment you can choose to:

  • Digitise some family documents and photos.
  • Get help with your family search.
  • Discuss your whakapapa research with the Māori Specialist, Ann Reweti.

There is no charge for these appointments but registration is required.
** UPDATE: these events are now fully booked **

It’s NZ Dance Week Question Time!

We are counting down to NZ Dance Week (5, 6, 7, 8… get it?) and are getting SO excited for what’s happening at Central Library that week, that librarians have been started tapping and jiving through the shelves! So in the lead up to Dancing Through The Pages we quizzed our upcoming performers about their favourite books and current reading habits!

In order of the week’s performances, we kicked things off with choreographer and Artistic Director of Java Dance Theatre Sacha Copland.

So Sacha, tell us what are you reading at the moment?
“I usually have a few books on the go at any one time. For fun I am reading The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur.  For research for my next work I am reading The Brilliant History of Colour in Art by Victoria Finlay and Chocolate Nations, Living and Dying for Cocoa in West Africa by Orla Ryan. I am really interested in exploring colour more. There is too much monochrome! Also my next work is about chocolate so I have to research every aspect of it before I make it, the good, the bad and the ugly.”

What about your all-time favourite book character?
“This is tricky to answer! Maybe Aomame, a martial-arts instructor and physical therapist from Haruki Murakami’s IQ84. I also love Aliena in The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.”

Next up we have contemporary dancer and choreographer Lucy Marinkovich along with saxophonist and composer Lucien Johnson who answered our questions with the same creative partnership that we will hear more about at ‘A Song & Dance’!

What are you two reading at the moment?
Lucien: “Talking to My Daughter about the Economy by Yanis Varoufakis
Lucy: “Bright Air Black by David Vann (in preparation for the NZ Festival show OrphEus: a dance opera).”

Do you two have a favourite dance book or magazine?
Lucien: “For me it’s a music book: Music is my Mistress by Duke Ellington.”
Lucy: “Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild.”

Lucien, what about your favourite book to recommend?
We by Yevgeny Zamyatin or Symphony for the City of the Dead by M.T Anderson.”

For the final act we asked the same round of quickfire questions to the man behind ‘The Story of LARK’ Louglan Prior, RNZB dancer, choreographer and filmmaker extraordinaire!

What are you reading at the moment?
The History of Bees by Maja Lunde.”

Your all-time favourite book character?
“Albus Dumbledore.”
(We can’t fault you there, #WCLLovesHarryPotter!!)

What about your favourite book to recommend?
The Reader by Bernhard Schlink.”

And final question, do you have a favourite dance book or magazine?
David Hallberg’s autobiography – A Body of Work: Dancing to the Edge and Back and DANZ Magazine.”

Want to know more about Dancing Through the Pages and what’s happening for NZ Dance Week? Check out for all of the info, add the Facebook Event to your calendar and follow the hashtag #nzdw2018! We hope to see you there!

Pro-tip: don’t miss our most recent biographies booklist! We’ve hand-picked a selection of some of the prominent dancers in history, from Gene Kelly to Michael Jackson. We couldn’t resist making a list of our favourite dance movies as well, what better reason to relive Footloose is there! Take a look!

NZDW 2018