It is no secret that following the first rehearsal, countries make amends to their respective stage performances in order to improve in time for the live broadcast, either during the first semi-final or the second semi-final unless the host country or part of the big five, cause in that case, the grand final.
Malta’s very own Claudia Faniello will be treating the audiences at the rehearsals a completely different look on Friday 5th May. It has been promised that the second outfit will be less demure, and thus showing some skin. It is following this particular rehearsal that #TeamMalta will be deciding which look to go for, and then unveil it during the jury dress rehearsal which take place on Wednesday 10th May.
I think it is important to mention Claudia’s styling team which comprises of Justin Brincat, who’s responsible for the make-up; Ritianne Borg who’s responsible for her hair, and Gaetano Busuttil who’s responsible for the custom dresses that she is wearing. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news from Claudia Faniello and #TeamMalta.
Source: Thomas Hanses (EBU)
There are no words to describe the excellent rehearsal that Claudia Faniello gave yesterday morning as she left everyone gasping for air, breathless really. She wore a rather demure white gown, designed by Gaetano, very reminiscent of the one worn earlier this year during the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, giving a flawless vocal interpretation which silenced doubters, raising the bar for the acts that had to follow.
The stage, bathed in white and blue lighting oozes class and simplicity. This is rather appropriate with “Breathlessly”, a ballad penned by Gerard James Borg with a complimentary melody by Philip Vella and Sean Vella. On the screens behind her, Claudia’s face and body is projected several times, giving the performance a new lease of life, and letting the emotions flow.
Malta will be performing in slot number #4 during the second semi-final on Thursday 11th May at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Kiev, Ukraine between FYR Macedonia’s Jana Burceska and Romania’s Ilinca featuring Alex. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news from Claudia Faniello and #TeamMalta.
Source: Andres Putting (EBU)
Through our social media platforms on Facebook, and Twitter, we have proudly supported Spiteri Lucas Entertainment and their weekly production of “The Entertainers”, hosted by Janvil on NET Television by virtue of presenting a collage of photo featuring the artists that would be performing during that weeks’ episode. This week, we are presenting an article to help support the programme, and encourage you all to tune into NET Television on Saturday at 8:30 pm.
The line-up will feature two singers who have just taken part in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest; Raquela who finished in 8th place with “Ray of Light”, and Janice Debattista who as part of the band Crosswalk finished in 12th place with “So Simple”. They will be joined by classical soprano La Barokka, multiple ‘Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza’ and ‘Għanja tal-Poplu’ finalist Marie Claire, and relative newcomer Christian Aquilina. Weekly resident performances from Michela Galea and Ivan Spiteri Lucas might be expected.
As always, there will be a dance troupe to shift away slightly from the music, and this week it will be none other than the Dancel Dance Company, not too mention the weekly one-to-one interview which will be featuring popular chef Neil Darmanin. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene.
Source: Press Release, Luciano Bianco Photography
13-year-old, Christina Magrin is quickly becoming a household name to many after representing Malta at the 14th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, held in Valletta, with the song “Parachute” which she co-wrote with Matt ‘Muxu’ Mercieca and Florent Boshnjaku.
In the aftermath of that spectacular showcase, Christina has returned to her everyday life focusing on her school work, and keeping her grades in check. That said, she has also been busy in the studio working on new material with some of the world’s leading songwriters, in preparation for the release of her debut album in a couple of months’ time.
The 2nd single off the young singer/songwriter’s debut album, "Snow Globe" is co-written with Matt ‘Muxu’ Mercieca, and Cyprian Cassar, the latter of which is also responsible for both the melody and the production of the song. People had an opportunity to listen to the song on the 18th February, during the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017, where Christina was a guest star.
The 1st performance of the new single was absolutely extraordinary and involved students from ‘The Voice Lab’ as well as an intense choreography by the Southville Dancers. You may view the performance below. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene.
Janice Mangion, one of Malta’s leading vocalists, a solo singer in her own right, and also a member of the Animae Gospel Choir has recently launched her debut single, an r’n’b soul ballad with a pulsing beat entitled “Burnin”, composed by Elton Zarb and penned by Emil Calleja Bayliss.
In the initial stages of the creative process, Janice sought a meaningful message, one which helps those who find themselves in moments of despair, thinking that their faith has abandoned them completely. This, accompanied by her soulful voice creates an exceptionally beautiful song. Aiding in the recorded was the talented Angela Spiteri who provided a strong backing vocal.
“Burnin”, which is available from streaming and purchase on all major digital platforms has been released through CAP Sounds, a record label based in Germany with full distribution handled by Universal Music Germany. Manfred Holz of the aforementioned company stated ‘Janice has an incredible vocal range which we are proud to represent, and we believe that “Burnin” showcases her talent in the best possible way’.
In support of the single, which was officially released on Friday 23rd September, Janice Mangion and her team, led by Marc Calleja Bayliss of Ironic PR & Artist Management thought it best to work on a lyric video, commissioning visionaries Angie and Duane Laus, with the result officially made public on Thursday 29th September.
Janice Mangion would like to thank everyone who has supported the release of this song from day one, and would like to thank her team of sponsors, and also the media outlets who have been in touch to help in any way. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene.
Source: Press Release
"Burnin" - Lyric Video
Whoa! :O HERE it is ♡ Months of hard #work and labour is now #online ♫ "Burnin", composed by Elton Zarb and penned by Emil Calleja Bayliss
Ira Losco, chosen by a panel of professional judges, as well as the general public as Malta’s representative at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016, has been the main recipient of the coverage encompass the international spectacle in the past couple of days and weeks. As the event nears closer, we are proud to continue a distinguished time honoured tradition in inviting a number of artists from the local music industry to share their views and opinions about the competing entries on each of the 3 evenings.
During the 1st semi-final, we are proud to welcome: Karen DeBattista, a finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2015 with “12, Baker Street”, written by Jan Van Dijck and Emil Calleja Bayliss and also winner of L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 with “Jien Ma Naħdimx”, written by Mark Scicluna and Rita Pace and Claudia Faniello, a two-time 1st runner-up in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, the first time being in 2008 with “Caravaggio”, a Ray Agius and Godwin Sant composition and the second time being in 2012 with “Pure”, written by Philip Vella and Gerard James Borg.
During the 2nd semi-final, we have enlisted the services of: Janice DeBattista, a finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2013 with “Perfect Day”, co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat as well as a lead vocalist in the Christian Rock Band, Salt and Brooke Borg, a female singer/songwriter whose return to Malta in the past couple of months saw her finish 2nd in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with “Golden”, a song co-written by Aidan O’Connor, Christian Schneider and Sara Biglert.
For the grand finale, we have enlisted two individuals who are larger than life. Julie Pomorski, a female singer/songwriter who reached the Malta Eurovision Song Contest stage back in 2007, apart from emerging triumphant in L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2005, and the Summer Hit Song Contest 2015 and Franklin Calleja, a 4-time Malta Eurovision Song Contest finalist who reached 3rd place earlier this year with the song “Little Love”, written by Cyprian Cassar and Matt ‘Muxu’ Mercieca.
Please note that the guest commentary will be taking place on the Official Facebook and Twitter Pages of escflashmalta.com on the 10th, 12th and 14th May 2016. We would like to take this opportunity to wish Ira Losco all the very best of luck in Stockholm whilst thank the special team of guest commentators for accepting their role.
In a Press Release issued by the organising committee of L-Għanja tal-Poplu – Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija, it has been made public that 144 submissions were received on Tuesday 19th April at the Youth Travel Circle (YTC) in Merchant Street, Valletta. This is a record number of original songs for the ever-growing festival which is being organised under the auspices of Spazzju Kreattiv, the Public Broadcasting Services, Pjazza Teatru Rjal and Fondazzjoni Valletta 2018.
As of Friday 22nd April, the first phase of the judging will commence, with a panel of expert judges whittling down to the songs by the end of the weekend, and leaving a shortlist of potential candidates, from which a second panel of expert judges will then select the 18 qualifiers. It is expected that the names of the songs through to the final phase of the competition will be made public by the end of April, hence in a weeks’ time.
L-Għanja tal-Poplu – Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija will be a coordinated effort, with the support of the PBS Orchestra, led by Mro Paul Abela and Mro Joe Brown. The last winner of L-Għanja tal-Poplu was “Ġismi”, written by Mark & Matthew Pellicano, with vocals provided by Ecca whilst the last winner of the Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija was “Hawn Mill-Ġdid”, written by Paul Abela & Joe Julian Farrugia with vocals provided by Olivia Lewis. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.
Source: Press Release
Between Friday 8th and Sunday 10th January 2016, at the St Vincent de Paul Theatre, the 4th edition of the Singer Stage International Festival, organised by Kaya (Priscilla Giordano Psaila) took place. This year's edition was divided into no less than five (5) different categories, with a total of thirty five (35) participants from Malta, and another ten (10) participants from Estonia, Slovenia, Turkey, Italy, Spain, and Poland.
All the participants had the opportunity to sing two (2) songs, one during the 1st two nights, and the other during the 2nd night, with a panel of international judges passing their verdict. Making up this aforementioned panel of international judges were; Tolga Gurdil, Irina Stamenovski, Stanislaw Zielinski, Sandi Vovk and Guillermo Albelo.
Category A: 5 to 8 years
1st Place - Rihana Azzopardi - 266.90 points
2nd Place - Amy Pace - 265.60 points
3rd Place - Valery Savchuk (Estonia) - 255.70 points
Best Future Singer - Krista Sujak
Category B: 9 to 10 years
1st Place - Martina Cutajar - 244.91 points
2nd Place - Martina Abela - 236.82 points
3rd Place - Elisa Muscat - 207.72 points
Best Simpathy - Luana Schembri
Category C: 11 to 12 years
1st Place - Kayley Cuschieri - 269.70 points
2nd Place - Christina Magrin - 269 points
3rd Place - Polina Davydova (Russia) - 265.70 points
Best Promising Singer - Shania Borg Lebrun
Category D: 13 to 15 years
1st Place - Titti Girardi (Italy) - 259.40 points
2nd Place - Aleksandra Vovk (Slovenia) - 258.20 points
3rd Place - Bradley Debono - 248 points
Best Interpretation - Stamenovski Radica (Turkey)
Category E: 16 years over
1st Place - Laura Gonzalez (Spain) - 243.20 points
2nd Place - Wiktoria Sikorska (Poland) - 227.30 points
3rd Place - Bradley Gomez - 225.50 points
Best Technique - Luana Ciantar
Grand Prix Winner of Singer Stage 2015
Magdalena Chołuj (Poland) - 277.20 points
All the winners of each respective category were given a free recording session by Dominic Cini at D Studios, whilst the winner of the Grand Prix was given a free set of song lyrics by Emil Calleja Bayliss. Previous Grand Prix Winners of the Singer Stage International Festival have included; Shieradye Micallef (2012), Destiny Chukunyere (2013) and Aidan Jay Drakard (2014). We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene, and aspiring young artists
Source: Press Release
Every year brings with it a number of events, festivals and lots of new material that many appreciate and play over and over throughout the year. The editorial board of escflashmalta.com decided to have a look back at the main highlights of 2015, the year in which no Malta Eurovision festival was held because it was held back in late 2014 but other annual competitions keeping the singers busy such as; l-Għanja Tal-Poplu, Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, the Summer Hit Song Contest and for the very first time a singers competition for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. There were quite a number of events that kept our site busy and also our readers on the lookout for the next event.
The year surely started in full swing for Amber who after winning the right to represent Malta in November of 2014, a lot of work was done to ensure that the song is given the right boost and everything would be ready for the big night in Vienna. Sadly, Malta finished in 11th place in the semi-final and missed out on a chance to compete in the grand final in Vienna but this whole experience was surely one to treasure for the Maltese ‘Warrior’ and as we head into 2016, Amber is ready to release her first singe ‘What They Say’ by the same team behind ‘Warrior’, Elton Zarb and Matthew Mercieca.
The first local festival of the year, happened to be one in Maltese in 2015 in the name of ‘L-Għanja Tal-Poplu’, a festival that has been going for a number of years and has a good following thanks to the importance it gives to the themes of the songs. The winner of the festival was the song ‘Ġismi’ interpreted by newcomer Ecca Muscat. Mark and Matthew Pellicano’s composition attracted a lot of attention from the beginning, thanks to its graphic theme which deals with sexual abuse in fact, Mark Pellicano, the author behind this number won the prestigious award for the best social theme in the festival. Raquel Galdes finished as the first runner up with the song ‘Ċans Ieħor’ which was penned by Daniel Paul Farrugia and Norbert Borg, whilst Rita Pace ended in third place with ‘Battibekk’ she wrote along side Emil Calleja Bayliss and Paul Attard.
Following this event, the finalists of other competition were announced but the attention turned to towards the Junior Malta Eurovision Song Contest, where for the very first time 20 singers competed for the right to represent Malta in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Bulgaria. The three favourites from the get go where, Christina Magrin, Veronica Rotin and Destiny Chukunyere, and these three super talented girls surely did not disappoint as they belted out their number and managed to finish in the top three positions. Destiny Chukunyere was the one who ended up on top. After consultation with her team, PBS selected the song that Destiny was going to sing in Bulgaria which was composed by Elton Zarb and penned by Matthew Mercieca, the team behind Malta’s last two Junior Eurovision entries and Malta’s 2015 Eurovision entry.
Destiny gave her input in the song to both in the composition and also with the lyrics, these prooved to be vital in coming up with a number that suits Destiny’s voice and personality. The creation of a memorable, catchy number in terms of ‘Not My Soul’ was surely a successful formula – Destiny arrived in Bulgaria as one of the top favourites to win the Junior Eurovision for the second time for Malta and she did not let anyone down. She delivered the performance of a lifetime and won the competition with the biggest score to date – managing the rare feat of winning both the public vote and the jury vote. The win was well merited, throughout that week in Bulgaria, Destiny was nicknamed mini Aretha Franklin and we’re sure we will be hearing more of her in the years to come.
The annual Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza saw a number of new names in the competition, mixed with others who were no strangers to this festival. The result was slightly unexpected as Analise Mifsud’s self penned ‘Kuraġġ’ won the judges hearts with her simple yet very well sung number, a song that speaks about finding the inner strength to fight when you hit an all time low. This was Annalise’s second participation in this event and one can say she went by unnoticed until the final night where she emerged victorious over Dorcas Debono’s ‘Ma Ninsa Qatt’ written by Dominic Cini and Rita Pace which finished in second place and Dario Bezzina’s ‘Dment Li Malti Ħaj’ written by Ray Agius, which was seen as one of the top contenders from the beginning.
Two other winners who emerged in the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza were Mikaela Bajada who won the New Talent Section and Paolo Micallef who triumphed in the second edition of Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Junior. Mikaela Bajada reached the finals of the prestigious event and went on to win this section with the song ‘Għandi Ħolma’, a composition of Mark Spiteri Lucas & Francesco Pio Attard.
On the other hand, Paolo Micallef won the judges with his quirky number ‘Maġija B’Tekonloġija’ a composition of Augusto Cardinali and Etienne Micallef – he gave a very intriguing performance as through it he gave the song life. This was Paolo’s second participation in the event and surely celebrated his lucky birthday on the day of the festival. In second place was Nicole Falzon with the beautiful ballad 'Ngħix Ħolma', a composition of Mark Spiteri Lucas and Emil Calleja Bayliss, and in third place, another ballad, this time with a social theme in the form of "Inħobbkom It-Tnejn", a composition of Dominic Cini and Chris Azzopardi, with vocals provided by Rutger Scicluna Galea.
The Summer Hit Song Contest returned for the second consecutive after having a break of nearly three years. The winner of this edition was the song ‘Tabula Rasa’ sung by the bubbly Julie Pomorksi who won her second festival, ten years after triumphing in L-Għanja Tal-Poplu as a young teenager. Her number was composed by Augusto Cardinali and Giovann Attard, she also had her input in both the composition and the lyrics. It was the first time for Julie, giving a go at songwriting and with the help of Augusto and Giovann, she wrote the beautiful and intriguing ‘Tabula Rasa’. The runner up of the competition was Michela Galea, who also managed to win two awards which are unique to local competitions, she won the best duet with ‘Bounce Back’ singing alongside Janvil and also the best Maltese Cover with ‘Għanja’, an original of Nadine Axisa. This composition was by Renato Briffa and Emil Calleja Bayliss. The second runner up of the competition was Danica Muscat with ‘Amour’, a song composed and penned by Philip Vella.
2015 year finished off with the announcement of the 20 finalists of the Malta Eurovision, all fighting for a chance to represent Malta in Stockholm, Sweden among the competitors there’s the return of former Eurovision runner-up Ira Losco, who made her return to the local competition with two numbers after months of speculation of whether she will participate or not. Yet, the race is surely still wide open, with 20 strong numbers and varies styles which appeal to different people – in fact both locals and foreigners discussed how this could be one of the best Maltese national selections in a while. The competition will in fact open the festival season in the fourth weekend of January, with the semi-finals on the 22nd of January and the finals the next day.
One rumour which went round during 2015 was the possible return of the ‘Festival Internazzjonali Tal-Kanzunetta Maltija’ but unfortunately it was not the case, seems that it was put aside for 2015 for some reason or another. A real pity because it gave light to a number of new Maltese songs in the last edition and gave the enthusiasts another festival to look forward to on a national scale. Yet, so far it was not meant to be. Let’s hope that 2015 would be a year were one gets to celebrate through more competitions and more songs to feast the keen Maltese music lover.
On behalf of the editorial team of escflashmalta.com, we would like to wish you a Happy New Year filled with joy, health and success in whatever your heart desires. We urge you to keep following escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene in 2016. All the best!
- Summer Hit Song Contest
- Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza
- Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Junior
- Malta Eurovision Song Contest
- Ecca Muscat
- Michela Galea
- Rita Pace
- Raquel Galdes
- Danica Muscat
- Julie Pomorski
- Elton Zarb
- Matthew Mercieca
- Destiny Chukunyere
- Veronica Rotin
- Christina Magrin
- Mikaela Bajada
- Analise Mifsud
- Dorcas Debono
- Dario Mifsud Bonnici
- Paolo Micallef
Garnering a total of 185 points, Destiny Chukunyere from Malta has been crowned the winner of the 13th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, following an exceptional performance of “Not My Soul”, an original song composed by Elton Zarb to the lyrics of Matthew “Muxu” Mercieca.
This is Malta’s second victory in three years, having previously finished in 1st place with “The Start”, also composed by Elton Zarb to the lyrics of Matthew “Muxu” Mercieca with vocals provided by Gaia Cauchi. What makes this victory even more special though is that Destiny has managed to set the record for the most accumulated points, as had been set by Maria Isabel at the 2004 Junior Eurovision Song Contest!
In second place was Mika from Armenia whose “Love” garnered 176 points, whilst Lina from Slovenia finished in third place with 112 points following a beautiful performance of “Prva ljubezen”. Below you could have a look at the full ranking;
1. 185 points - Malta
2. 176 points - Armenia
3. 112 points - Slovenia
4. 105 points - Belarus
5. 93 points - Albania
6. 80 points - Russia
7. 79 points - Serbia
8. 64 points - Australia
9. 62 points - Bulgaria
10. 51 points - Georgia
11. 38 points - Ukraine
12. 36 points - Ireland
13. 36 points - Montenegro
14. 36 points - San Marino
15. 35 points - The Netherlands
16. 34 points - Italy
17. 26 points - Macedonia
Malta’s result saw the top points go to Italy, followed by Australia, and host country Bulgaria in third place. Half of the result was decided courtesy of an expert jury made up of singers; Amber (ESC 2015), Georgina Abela (ESC 1991), Deborah C (MESC 2012-2015), Christabelle (MESC 2014-2015) and disc jockey Dorian Cassar of 89.7 Bay. On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to congratulate Destiny on this astonishing result, and urge you to stay tuned to this portal even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the 2016 Junior Eurovision Song Contest which may or may not take place in Malta. Fingers Crossed!