24 November 2017
Tuesday, 21 November 2017 17:45

JESC 2017: Gianluca Cilia to Sing in Position #12 Featured

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The running order of this year’s Junior Eurovision Song Contest has been determined this evening, during the event’s official opening ceremony – held at the regal Georgian national library in Tbilisi. In addition to seeing this year’s participants on the red carpet, viewers and guests of the opening ceremony were treated to performances by Georgian national ballet, Sukhishvili – alongside previous entrants of Georgia at Junior Eurovision.

The countries performing in the first and last position were chosen by random draw, along with the running position of the host country. The draw was also carried out by the hosts of the opening ceremony, which included last year’s winner Mariam Mamadashvili. The remainder of the running order was chosen by the contest producers to ensure an entertaining show. This was announced by the European Broadcasting Union later in the evening.  

01. Cyprus

02. Poland

03. The Netherlands

04. Armenia

05. Belarus

06. Portugal

07. Ireland

08. F.Y.R. Macedonia

09. Georgia

10. Albania

11. Ukraine

12. Malta

13. Russia

14. Serbia

15. Australia

16. Italy

As you may have noticed, our very own Gianluca Cilia, and his entry ‘Dawra Tond’, penned by Emil Calleja Bayliss with music by Dominic Cini will be performed towards the latter part of the show. Over the next few days, each country be rehearsing on the stage at the Olympic Palace in Tbilisi. The live show will be airing at 16:00 CET, and Maltese viewers will be able to follow all the latest on Television Malta (TVM). In the meantime, for all the updates throughout the week, we urge you to follow escflashmalta.com even on Facebook and Twitter.

Source: junioreurovision.tv, tvm.com.mt

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Wednesday, 15 November 2017 23:48

GħTP Żgħażagħ 2018: Presenting the 30 Semi-Finalists Featured

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L-Għanja tal-Poplu Żgħażagħ, is making a comeback in 2018 after a 10 year hiatus, having run for a successful three year period between 2005 and 2007 welcoming Brooke, Marilena and Christabelle as winners. It is being organised by the L-Għanja tal-Poplu Committee in collaboration with St Benedict College in Kirkop, the Ministry of Education, L-Akkademja tal-Malti as well as the Malta Concert Orchestra.

Following the initial submission process, a professional panel of ‘expert judges’ heard the songs on CD before shortlisting on a total of 30 songs, all of which will have the chance to perform their original songs #live in front of another panel of ‘expert judges’. Please note that this next phase will be taking place on Saturday 2nd December.

Bradley Debono - ‘Bla Isem Bla Kunjom

Elisa Muscat - ‘Ċippitatu

Eliana Gomez Blanco & Aidan Jay Drakard - ‘Dwell

Sheridan Balzan - ‘Fil-Futur Qarib

Nicole Mifsud - ‘Ġejjieni

Thea Gauci - ‘Għerf il-Baħar'

Thea Gauci - ‘Ħmistax

Martina Abela - ‘Id Moħbija

Nicole Hammett - 'Id-Daqqa tal-Vjolin'

Kira Copperstone - 'Il-Ballata Tal-Vjolin'

Riona Degiorgio - ‘Il-Ħolma

Shazay Grima - ‘Illużjoni

Charisse Ann Vassallo - ‘Il-Verita

Thea Aquilina - ‘Kieku Nista

Eliana Gomez Blanco - ‘Kliem

Rachel Lowell- ‘Li Tiżra Taħsad

Bradley Debono- ‘L-Identita

Aidan Jay Drakard - ‘Ma Kienx ta’ Xejn

Martina Galea Lofreda - ‘Ma Nafx Għala

Luana Schembri - ‘Manikkin

Kacey Azzopardi - ‘Mhux Tagħna

Martina Galea Lofreda - ‘Moħħ ta’ Tifla

Kristy Spiteri - ‘Nann

Kayley Cuschieri - ‘Nanna

Elisa Muscat - ‘Sib Ħin

Kira Copperstone - ‘Skont id-Daqqa ż-Żifna

Nathan Psaila - ‘Stennejtek

Emma Cutajar - ‘Ta’ Rasi

Ilenia Camilleri - ‘Triq Oħra

Jahel Cardona - ‘Weġibni Ma

On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to wish all the performers, and the respective songwriters of the 30 semi-finalists the very best of luck. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about L-Għanja tal-Poplu Żgħażagħ and the local music industry when it becomes available.

Source: ghanjafest.com

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Wednesday, 08 November 2017 08:58

JESC 2017: Speaking to Malta's Gianluca Cilia Featured

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This year, for the very first time since 2008, Malta is represented by a male soloist at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. He will be performing the infectious "Dawra Tond", an original song composed by Dominic Cini with lyrics by Emil Calleja Bayliss. We have recently caught up with the 9 year old and had a chat about his upcoming experience in Georgia along with what he hopes to achieve in music, and life.

 

Hi Gianluca! Congratulations on being chosen by the public to represent Malta at this year’s Junior Eurovision! How did you feel when you realised that you would be flying the Maltese flag in Georgia? 

Thank you :) This was a big surprise for me.  This was my 1st experience competing to represent Malta in JESC and I wasn’t expecting to get such a result!

Can you tell us a bit more about your song – what is the message behind it? 

'Dawra Tond' is a very happy and positive song.  It is about life seen in a spinning motion, full of fun and games and which unites everyone together. 

You sing part of your song in the Maltese language – for those who do not understand Maltese, what are you singing about? 

The Maltese parts are 2 chants of  traditional Maltese games which also feature a circular motion. 

Your music video is very colourful and lively – it has received a lot of positive comments online. How did you find the whole experience of filming it?

The music video was one of my best experiences ever!! They were 3 full days of so much FUN! Most of the people in the video are my friends and the elderly man dancing is my grand great father! It was really funny seeing him bust a move to my song! That was a special moment.  My most favourite part was when I was riding the car.  I also got the chance to go on a long ride in between filming. 

How are the preparations for Tbilisi going? Are there any surprises that you can tell us about your performance?

We have a lot going on at the moment!  Daily rehearsals, shoots, interviews.  Everyone is taking really good care of me and I feel special J

A small surprise is that I will have 5 dancers accompanying me on stage. Our choreographer, Annalise, is making sure that we are super fun to watch!

My vocal coach Ms Pamela is also doing an amazing job and working magic on my voice and performance.  

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When it comes to getting ready for the competition, what aspect you finding the most challenging?

The most challenging part is keeping up with both school and JESC related preparations. I can’t neglect school work because it is very important. I have less free time because I want to make sure to do well in both school related work and JESC preparations!

Did you manage to hear any of the other songs from this year’s contest? Which did you like so far?  

Yes I have heard all released songs so far.  They are all different and each has a great potential. Thanks to Social Media I have managed to make friends with all the other singers representing their country in JESC. Can’t wait to meet them all! 

What do you know about Georgia so far? What are you most excited to see in Tbilisi? 

I have heard a lot of positive things about Georgia and how beautiful its capital city is. Georgia like Malta has its own language, Georgian. Something you don’t find in Malta are the mountains and I’m really looking forward to see the beautiful sceneries in Georgia

Have you been part of any international competitions before? And if so, what are your best memories from them? 

I have competed in several competitions in Italy and Romania.  My best memories were meeting new friends from different countries.  Sometimes some did not speak English but we still managed to make friends and have LOADS of fun!

Where are your three favourite places to visit in Malta – and why? 

1. Gozo – Gozo is Malta’s sister Island.  I was born on this beautiful island which I really enjoy visiting from time to time.  I enjoy the countryside in winter and its beautiful beaches in summer.

2. Paradise Bay – This is a beautiful small sandy beach. 

3. Blue Lagoon – The Sea again!  The blue lagoon is famous of its crystal clear waters! 

I am so proud and lucky to live on such a beautiful island.  I LOVE swimming and living on a small island like Malta makes it easier to enjoy different beaches and make the most of my summer holidays.

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When you’re not at school or rehearsals, what other things do you like to do in your free time?

I have different hobbies and at every change I get I am writing a story (I love writing adventure stories), drawing or reading a book. I’m a BIG fan of Lego and love creating my own things. I also enjoy chatting with friends.

Who are your favourite singers at the moment? If you could do a duet with anybody, who would it be and why?

I love Michael Buble and Italian singers Massimo Ranieri and Il Volo. My dream would be to perform with all of them!! I hope this dream comes true.  I love Buble’s swing music.  Massimo Ranieri is an Italian versatile amazing singer whose songs I love and Il Volo started off at my same age.  Their songs vary from modern to classic and I simply love listening and watch them perform live!

Do you have a personal goal for the competition? 

Definitely meeting new friends and have loads and loads of fun! This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for a boy my age :)

Thanks for your time Gianluca, and best of luck at this year’s Junior Eurovision!

Thank you so much for this lovely interview. I can’t wait to perform live in Georgia and make you sing and dance along to Dawra Tond!

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Wednesday, 11 October 2017 22:22

MESC 2018: Presenting the 16 Participating Entries Featured

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After 129 entries were submitted and two elimination phases, the finalists for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest has been announced. The reveal was shown this evening during the evening news on TVM - where the shortlisted artists were seen at the Upper Barrakka Gardens in Valletta, learning their fate as the competition progresses to the next stage.

Since the first eliminatory phase which was announced on September 15th, the thirty shortlisted entries were filmed while performing their entries live. This footage was then reviewed by a number of local and international expert juries in order to establish sixteen finalists. These finalists will take to the stage at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in a live show at the beginning of next year. 

Aidan - Dai Laga (Aidan Cassar)

Avenue Sky - We Can Run (Jonas Gladnikoff, Matthew Ker, Glen Vella)

Brooke Borg - Heart of Gold (Christian Schneider, Aidan O’Connor, Sara Biglert, Brooke Borg)

Christabelle Borg - Taboo (Thomas G:son, Christabelle Borg, Muxu)

Danica Muscat - One Step At A Time (John Ballard, Ruth Mussie, Jerusalem Yemane, Irena Krstva, Kian Fakhar)

Deborah C - Turn It Up (Christian Schneider, Aidan O’Connor, Sara Biglert)

Dwett - Breaking Point (Elton Zarb, Muxu)

Eleanor Cassar - Back To Life (Jonas Gladnikoff, Michael James Down)

Jasmine Abela - Supernovas (Charlie Mason, Jonas Thander)

Lawrence Gray - Love Renegade (Cyprian Cassar, Muxu)

Matthew Anthony - Call 2morrow (Jonas Gladnikoff, Tom Wiklund, Peder Eriksson)

Miriana Conte - Rocket (Cyprian Cassar, Muxu)

Petra Whiteford - Evolution (Elton Zarb, Muxu)

Rhiannon Micallef - Beyond Blue Horizons (Cyprian Cassar, Rhiannon Micallef)

Richard & Joe Micallef - Song For Dad (Cyprian Cassar, Richard Micallef)

Tiziana Calleja - First Time (Tina Stenberg)

From the list of sixteen finalists, twelve of them have reached the finals of the Malta Eurovision selection in the past - five of them featuring in last year's final. Around half of the songs have been produced locally - whilst the others are by international teams based in the United Kingdom and Sweden - some of them also being behind songs of finalists and winners in the Eurovision Song Contest previously. Richard Micallef, who will perform his entry with his father, was of course part of the group "Firelight", who reached the final for Malta back in 2014.

The newcomers to the festival are 18 year old Matthew Anthony, Aidan, Avenue Sky (which Aidan is also a member of) and Dwett - consisting of Mikhail & Cherylis. Last year, Mikhail was seen auditioning in Romania with his song "Sail Back" for their national selection process. 

More details about the 2018 Malta Eurovision Song Contest are expected to be announced by Public Broadcasting Services in due course. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: tvm.com.mt

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Friday, 29 September 2017 21:50

JESC 2017: Bilingual Song for Gianluca Cilia

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"Dawra Tond" (English - Spinning Around), has been revealed as the Maltese entry for the 2017 Junior Eurovision Song Contest. The song, performed Gianluca Cilia, was released this evening after the eight o'clock news on TVM. 

This year marks Malta's 13th participation in Junior Eurovision - which takes place this year in Tbilisi, Georgia on November 26th. The Maltese song for this year's edition has been written by Emil Calleja Bayliss - writer of many songs on the local music scene, such as "Kewkba" by Janice Mangion - the second placed entry in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017. It was composed by Dominic Cini, singer and two time finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest. The song, which is performed by Gianluca in both English and Maltese, was selected by Public Broadcasting Services (PBS) after an open call for songs. 

The official video for the song was filmed over three days, and features Gianluca alongside backing dancers in a number of scenes around the streets of Birgu and Bormla - as well as in a traditional barbershop. The uptempo song is the second song that Malta sends to the Junior Eurovision Song Contest which includes the Maltese language (the first being in 2010). 

Gianluca Cilia - soon to turn 10 years old just before the grand final in Georgia, has been singing from the of six. He has already taken part of a number of local and international singing contest, such as those in Italy and Romania. His latest victory was of course winning the ticket to represent Malta at Junior Eurovision - which he did at the start of July, beating off nine other singers in a live final broadcasted on TVM. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: TVM, PBS

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Friday, 29 September 2017 21:35

MESC 2018: Shortlist of 30 Entries Made Public

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Public Broadcasting Services Malta (PBS) have announced a shortlist which made it through the first eliminatory phase of the 2018 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, the island's well followed selection process for the Eurovision Song Contest. The news was revealed online at tvm.com.mt after the TVM evening news on Friday, September 15.

A total of 129 entries were submitted to PBS, twenty-seven less than the year before. From these, the broadcaster has shortlisted thirty, which will be further shortened to sixteen within the next month. The list of names announced features a feast of seasoned professionals on the Malta Eurovision scene, along with a number of new names. No details of songwriters have been announced, but it is expected that songs are by a mix of local and international composers. 

Abire Sekkaki - Casablanca Love

Aidan - Dai Laga

Aidan - See You

Avenue Sky - We Can Run

Brooke Borg - Heart of Gold

Christabelle Borg - Taboo

Dan - If Only

Danica Muscat - One Step At A Time

Deborah C - Turn It Up

Deborah C & Josef Tabone - Human

Dominic Cini - Pictures

Eleanor Cassar - Back To Life

Ishmael Grech - Good Times

Jasmine Abela - Supernovas

Kelsey Bellante - Super Woman

Kevin Paul Calleja - Great Adventure

Kimberley Curtis - Monsters

Kurt Anthony Cassar - You Will Find Me

Lawrence Gray - Love Renegade

Malcolm Pisani - Kiss

Matthew Caruana - Call 2morrow

Mikhail Attard & Cherylis Camileri - Breaking Point

Miriana Conte - Rocket

Nicole Azzopardi - Mixed Feelings

Petra Whiteford - Evolution

Raquel Galdes - In My Mind

Rhiannon Micallef - Beyond Blue Horizons

Richard & Joe Micallef - Song For Dad

Stefan Galea - Closer

Tiziana Calleja - First Time

International fans will surely recognise the names of Richard Micallef and Nicole Azzopardi - the former representing Malta in 2014 as part of "Firelight", and the latter taking part for Malta in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest back in 2010. Other notable mentions can be made to Eleanor Cassar - returning after a number of years away from the local festival scene, in addition to Christabelle Borg - re-entering the festival after working on her first EP with international producers. 

It has been said that during these past couple of days, singers have been invited to a live audition phase in order to hear how their songs sounded when interpreted live. During this elimination phase, a number of local and international expert juries will be involved to choose the top sixteen finalists which will then compete during the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2018. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: TVM, PBS

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In a press release issued through netnews.com.mt, the organising committee of the ‘Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza’ issued the names of the finalists, their song-titles and also their respective songwriters for this year’s edition which is set to take place on the 19th September.

 

As always, this year’s festivities which will be taking place just a couple of days prior to Independence day features a number of established names in the music industry, all hoping to take home the top prize. There are also several newcomers, all hoping that this will be their big breakthrough. Last year the winning participant was Dario, with the song “Se Naslu Żgur”, composed and penned by Ray Agius.

5230 2051 – “Nistaqsi” – Marie Claire (Andrew Zammit, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2052 – “Ideal” – Marlon Bianco (Philip Vella)

5230 2053 – “Fil-Qrib” – Sarah Bonnici (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2070 – “Ftit Ħin” – Francesca Borg (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2071 – “Żagħżugħ Kuraġġ” – Mirko Bugeja (Clinton Paul, Stephen Baldacchino)

5230 2072 – “Triq Waħda” – Sebastian Calleja (Dominic Cini, Joe Julian Farrugia)

5230 2073 – “Storja ta’ Suċċess” – Cherylis (Glen Vella, Paul Ellul)

5230 2074 – “Ħabib Għalliem” – Michela Dalli (Andrew Zahra, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2075 – “Minn Wara l-Ħasira” – Karen DeBattista (Mark Scicluna, Rita Pace)

5230 2076 – “Xwejħa” – Dorcas Debono (Dominic Cini, Joe Julian Farrugia)

5230 2077 – “F’Idejna t-Tmun” – Michela Galea (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2078 – “Illum Naf” – Simone Gauci (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2079 – “Polz Iħabbat” – Ishmael Grech (Philip Vella, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2080 – “Tiegħek” – Estelle Imbroll (Mark Scicluna, Joe Julian Farrugia)

5230 2081 – “Mirja tad-Destin” – Mauro Kitcher (Dominic Cini, Clifton Casha)

5230 2082– “Jien Maltija” – Danica Muscat (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss) 

5230 2083 – “Għal Ftit” – Joseph Refalo (Francesco Grech, Rita Pace)

5230 2084 – “Pass ‘il Bogħod” – Roberta Sacco (Andrew Zahra, Clifton Casha)

5230 2085 – “Frott il-Ħidma” – Victoria Sciberras (Philip Vella, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2086 – “Ugwali” – Graziella Vella (Kaya, Ingrid Vella)

5230 2087 – “Titkellem bis-Sinjali” – Maria Christina Desira (Kaya, Christoper Azzopardi)

5230 2088 – “Eliżir” – Kurt Galea (Clinton Paul)

5230 2093 – “Bħal Fjura” – Nicole Falzon (Mark Spiteri Lucas, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2094 – “Ċans tad-Deheb” – Chanelle Galea (Philip Vella, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

5230 2096 – “Infallibli” – Nicole Micallef (Cyprian Cassar, Rita Pace)

As you can note above, each song has been allocated a tele-voting number. The song which gets the most votes will be given a seperate public opinion trophy, noting that the final result of the competition will be decided by a panel of professional judges. The 25 entries chosen were at first divided into two categories, Talent Stabbilit, and Talent Ġdid. They will all compete on the same playing field as one major category. On behalf of escflashmalta.com, we would like to wish everyone all the very best of luck. Stay tuned to this portal, even on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: netnews.com.mt

On Saturday 2nd September, the 41st edition of ‘L-Għanja tal-Poplu’ took place at Pjazza Teatru Rjal, hosted by Clifford Galea, Sarah-Lee Zammit, with comic interludes provided by Aiken Buhagiar. Introducing each entry by virtue of their songwriters, and then a postcard which featured the artists in different surroundings, the 18 songs were performed, accompanied by the 40-strong member Malta Concert Orchestra under the direction of Mro Paul Abela, and Mro Joe Brown. 

The evening was a true celebration of music, with each participant putting forward an original song in Maltese, our national language, and one of Malta’s two official languages. The evening also had the inclusion of two special guests, kicking things off with the Kinetic Dance Studio who performed a routine to new music composed and arranged by Sean Vella, as well as Mary Rose Mallia, an iconic female artist who is celebrating her 50-year anniversary in music. At the end of the evening, the following awards were given out. 

Best Recording: “Rutina Tgħallina” – Xarulu’ (Xarulu’)

Best Singer/Songwriter: “Min Jaf” – Ryan Grech (Ryan Grech)

Best Original Song: “Narak Kuntent” – Odelsie Camilleri (Odelsie Camilleri)

Best Interpretation: “Ritratt” – Monica Said (Philip Vella)

Third Place: “Rutina Tgħallina” – Xarulu’ (Xarulu’)

Second Place: “13, Strada Stretta” – Dario u Grecia Bezzina (Dario Bezzina, Emil Calleja Bayliss)

First Place: “Meta r-Ramel Jitħallat mas-Silġ” – Jessica Magro (Pamela Bezzina, Paul Ellul) 

On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to congratulate all the winners, as well as the 18 participants, for making it through from 131 submissions. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about L-Għanja tal-Poplu and the local music scene.

Source: L-Għanja tal-Poplu

Have you heard? ‘The Entertainers Singing Challenge’ is back for a 3rd consecutive year. Spiteri Lucas Entertainment have recently announced that they have extended the application date for interested male or female singers as soloists, duos, trios or even groups, by just a couple of days. The deadline is now set for Monday 7th August.

Therefore, if you’re interested in having a spectacular experience of performing #live during the most popular programme on Saturday nights, while accompanied by a band, then do not waste anymore time, and get in touch with the production team. Previous winners of ‘The Entertainers Singing Challenge’ have included Victoria Sciberras, Martina Abela, and Gail Attard, three talented girls whose talent knows no boundaries. Who will follow in their footsteps? That is yet to be seen, but it could be you!

For more information about participation, send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. prior to the closing date, which has now been extended to Monday . We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: Spiteri Lucas Entertainment

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Broken Unprepared” is an intriguing title for a debut single, and no one at this portal would have expected any different from Crosswalk, who first emerged onto the scene with their promotional track, “So Simple” at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017. Written by Boris Cezek, the song has an interesting flair to it, almost out of a musical, to be more direct, “Rent”.

Despite having formed back in 1999, as a band between two friends, Steve Camilleri Bowman and guitarist Kenny D’Ugo, 2017 seems to be a year of firsts, adding vocalists Janice DeBattista to the line-up as well as songwriter and producer Boris Cezek. In support of the release, the band have also issued a lyric video, created by Duane Laus, the same mastermind behind lyric videos of Firelight, Gianluca Bezzina, Avenue Sky, and Janice Mangion amongst others. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: Crosswalk

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