Music & Mansfield

Casson's latest collaboration with LCB Photography is a series of beautiful pictures set with musical quotes from Katherine Mansfield. In Two Tigers, Mansfield's story is told in kaleidoscope of original songs, with her words at the core.

'When I came to re-imagine the show I went back to explore her work, to rediscover the impetus that had first drawn me to approach a telling in this way.

A new unexpurgated edition of her notebooks, published in the interim reinforced what I'd really know all along - Mansfield's love of music and awareness of its' rhythm and significance is the undersong to her writing.

Mansfield music quote

Before becoming a writer Katherine Mansfield aspired to train as a professional cellist.
Years later she wrote in her diary

'I'd rather be with musical people than any others... they're mine really.'

Her natural  musicianship, love and appreciation of music never left her, and awareness of sound provides context and meaning to her settings - it's a feature of her writing. 

Mansfield quote
Mansfield quote Sea

She liked to say that she was born during a storm -
at 11 Tinakori Road, Wellington.

'a white, wooden, red-roofed house overlooking the splendid natural harbour, within sound of the foghorns and close to the shops and quays of the wet and windy city.'
Jeffrey Meyers 

Mansfield melody quote
Mansfield music quote
Mansfield moon quote

Born into the prosperous Beauchamp family the middle child of five, KM was surrounded by pictures, books and music. She liked to spend time alone in her room - a haven of words, etchings and music, with a window where she could sit, watch and dream.

The solace she found in words and music continued through the whole of her short life.

Mansfield London quote 2

Along with her sisters, Mansfield went to school in London, and fell in love with this lively, cosmopolitan, artistic cetre, after what she felt to be the provincial colonialism of her homeland. 

She left her native New Zealand when she was nineteen to seek her fortune in England, initially staying in a hostel for music students in Paddington. She never returned.

Mansfield London quote 1
Mansfield happiness quote
Mansfield spring quote
Mansfield flower quote
Mansfield sky quote

Mansfield is known for her descriptions of place, vividly describing the look of the landscape, together with how it smells and sounds, and how all these senses affect or offset the emotions of the character within it.

The unseen spell of music and noise interplays with emotional enchantment - invisible but deeply felt.

Music comes streaming down.jpg

Photographs taken by LCB Photography. Visit her website.