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dtour literary app bigger, bilingual

Tuesday 4 August 2020 10:29pm

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Associate Professor David Ciccoricco (English and Linguistics), Craig Scott (Head of Exhibitions and Creative Services, Otago Museum) and Dunedin City of Literature Director Nicky Page at the dtour launch in 2018

dtour, a literary app that links remarkable writers and their stories to iconic sites in Dunedin, has doubled in size and translated many of its entries into te reo Māori.

The app now includes sites for over 100 writers, and 20 of those give users the option to read and listen in both Māori and English.

The project benefitted from local language expertise, with Komene Cassidy taking on the translation work and Tipene Winiata doing te reo audio voiceovers.

English and Linguistics Associate Professor and dtour creative director David Ciccoricco says while there are many literary tourism apps worldwide, he is “pretty sure this is the only bilingual Māori and English one.”

“But what is perhaps most special about the new material is that it features passages of poetry and fiction by iconic New Zealand writers like Janet Frame, Charles Brasch, and Hone Tuwhare, some of which is getting translated for the very first time.”

The University of Otago’s English and Linguistics Programme collaborated with the Dunedin UNESCO City of Literature to create dtour in 2018, and the new entries and bi-lingual material are the result of over a year’s worth of new research, writing, and voice recording, which continued through the weeks of national lockdown during the pandemic.

The app’s literary locations not only reflect the city’s colourful cultural history but also showcase its built and natural environment. It features original scripts for each entry that are voiced-over by iconic New Zealand voices Dougal Stevenson and Sue Wootton.

dtour is available for Apple iOS and Android devices as a free download from the AppStore or Google Play.

Click here to for a sample of Tip Winiata reading Sue Wootton’s iconic poem “Dune din” (2017).