January 24, 2020

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The local festival ‘L-Għanja Tal-Poplu’ was held yesterday night at the Phoenicia Hotel in Floriana. The show was broadcasted live on ONE TV through the popular programme ‘Bla Agenda’. The fourteen competing songs were all sung live and accompanied on stage by live instruments – this is something which makes this festival unique as the musicians along with the singers can experience the sensation of singing and playing the instruments live.

The show was hosted by local presenter and lyricist Deo Grech who replaced Vanni Pule after the latter pulled out of the show at the last minute citing personal reasons. On a different note, the songs lyrics in Maltese are of utmost importance and this was stated over and over again in the live broadcast – in fact the organisers each year award a song which has the ‘Best Social Theme’ whilst they also present the award for the ‘Best Interpretation’ along with the best three songs on the night according to a panel of experts.

The big winner on the night was certainly Corazon who triumphed with the self-penned entry ‘Mill-Għajnejn ta’ Tifla’. Corazon managed to take both the best interpretation award and also first place. This is Corazon’s third victory in this festival, after she triumphed last year with the song ‘Ta’ L-Ahhar’ where she sung in a duet with Walter Micallef - who was tonight’s special guest. Corazon also won the festival in 2007 when she participated for only the second time with the song ‘Hawn Jien’ whilst in 2008 she was rewarded the prize for the best interpretation for the song ‘Illejla B’Xejn’.

ESCflashmalta has spoken to the winner and this is what she had to say "This year I experimented with a different collaboration with 5 great musicians. I am so proud of my musicians who did an excellent job in the rendition of 'Mill-Għajnejn ta' Tifla'. I feel that the win is all theirs, due to the collective effort that they all put into this performance. This year I would like to take a step back from the merits of this result and simply feel so proud that my composition was executed so beautifully, before such a warm audience - that alone, is enough for me." For more information about Corazon, be sure to visit her official website here.

In second place was Petra Zammit with the song ‘Rakkont ta’ Omm’ composed by Heathcliff Balzan to the lyrics of Deo Grech. The latter was also awarded the prize for the best social theme in this year’s festival. Rita Pace managed a satisfying third with her self-penned entry ‘Indunajt’. The judges on the night were; Prof. Manwel Mifsud, Steve Borg, Joan Haber, Olvin Vella, Siro Camilleri, Doreen Galea and Rosanna Miceli Donolly.

All the three winning songs feature rather strong social themes – the winner speaks about how children see the world through their eyes and their sincerity. The second placed song speaks about what single mothers feel whilst the third placed song speaks about the injustice in local spheres.  One has to remind the readers that the aim of this festival apart from promoting local music is also for a good cause and those who either bought the ticket to attend to the show or decided to buy the CD would have carried out a good deed. The CD of the event is also out for sale, those interested in buying one of the CD's can do so from YTC Valletta.

Source: GħanjaFest.com

There was a time when the local music industry was close to being non-existent but with the development of management houses, and recording labels, it seems that things are changing quite fast. One of the emerging talents of this new age which we are presently living in is none other than the group, Airport Impressions who are currently being looked after by their manager, Howard Keith of Jagged House. Starting off with recording new material, they compiled everything into an album but everyone now and then, a new single is released onto the radios and thus an extremely well organized event takes place.

The upcoming release from the group bears the name 'Retro Star' and the song will be sent to the radio stations just after the anticipated launching event which is in turn being held within the club known as Numero Uno. Airport Impressions as a group have just been over to perform in Sweden. Their first international gig was deemed a huge success and other projects are definitely in the pipeline for the popular local band. Attendance to this particular event can only be achieved through a number of limited invites which have been published and distributed in local businesses such as Celio, Tom Tailor and Tally Weijl meaning all of the clothing establishments that fall under the Square Deal Limited. Once more, the group will not only be launching a single but they will also be playing a full live electric gig for their loyal fans who will be present.

Source: Facebook, Allen Venables

In recent years, the Maltese Islands have been playing host to a variety of well known singers including Michael Bolton, Laura Pausini, Bryan Adams, Dionne Warwick, Lady Gaga and Enrique Iglesias amongst others and this time round it is no different as the Dire Straits Co-Founder, David Knopfler is set to perform at the Manoel Theater tomorrow, Saturday and Sunday and he has made sure to pick some amazing local talent as supporting acts.

Following his departure from the popular band Dire Straits, he has managed to hold on quite strongly and has managed an extremely modest solo career. During the three day extravaganza, he has picked the bands "Explicit", "The Creepers" and "Jewls Verse ft. Aldo Spiteri" to support him on Friday, Saturday and Sunday respectively but he also made another decision and that is for a Maltese singer to accompany him on the duet of the popular song "Tears Fall" which managed to break through a number of international charts. The artist chosen is none other than former Malta Song for Europe finalist Fiona Cauchi whose best result came back in 2009 with along with the group Q and their song "Before You Walk Away". It is also rumoured that the aforementioned artist has not submitted for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2011 due to other commitments.

Source: Manoel Theater Website

It is always quite pleasant to hear that Maltese talent is doing well abroad and it is even better to see the local media giving exposure to such achievements. In recent days, both the Public Broadcasting Services and the Times of Malta announced that former Malta Song for Europe and Sfida participant, Rachel Fabri has become part of the British Classical Crossover group "All Angels" which in turn, have already been successful within the last couple of years.

Rachel Fabri's big break in the Maltese music scene came when along with Romina Mamo and Neville Refalo; they reached the final of the 2005 edition of the Malta Song for Europe with the song "We Can Do Better" written and composed by Carm Fenech. Since then though, she moved to the United Kingdom, where following a year of studying, she auditioned for musicals within the West End and despite being close on a number of occasions, she never made it. Alas, she had already decided to come back to Malta for a break from this lifestyle, when she decided to give her career there one last shot, auditioning for a group of which she was already a fan of namely "All Angels".

Rachel had just arrived in Malta when she received a call that ultimately changed her life, as she was told that she had been chosen to be part of the group and thus replacing the singer that had left to pursue a career in Opera. The British group All Angels were signed to a five album contract to Universal Classics and Jazz in 2006 and despite the high placing of their debut album hitting at position nine (9), their last two albums were moderately placed at forty-four (44) and fifty-four (54). One should note that with television and radio exposure behind them, along with a new recording label being AWOL Records, they are surely to bounce back also sporting this new line-up.

We would like to wish Rachel Fabri along with the rest of the group All Angels the very best of luck and we hope that we can get to speak to them in the coming weeks and months as we continue reporting on their progress. Keep following ESCflashmalta for the latest news about Maltese artists and their endeavors within the music industry.

Source: Times of Malta, PBS, All Angels

Thursday, 13 January 2011 09:02

Malta: THEA releases New Single


Young artist THEA launched her new single ‘Caught You Out’ at the Malta Music Awards 2010, the country’s most honouring event for praising local music and artists alike. This celebration of achievements was on the 27th November at the MFCC. TVM showed the MMAs on Saturday 4th December. British music producer L. Hobbs has once again entrusted THEA with yet another original RnB song in coordination with Freetime Productions to release an outstanding and impressive product.

Synonymous with RnB music, THEA released ‘Musilicious’ Music Video in February produced by Giulio Maddaloni in Palermo, travelled to Germany to record other songs during Easter holidays and released ‘I’m Your Fan’ in May at the Malta Fashion Awards. Recorded in Germany, ‘I’m Your Fan’ made it promptly to various local music charts. The ‘Isle of MTV’ music week in Bugibba, Farsons Great Beer Festival and Indifest amongst others also showcased THEA on stage. Such hectic schedule and hard work paved the way for a Nomination for Best Hip Hop and RnB Artist at the MMAs 2010 www.musicawards.com.mt. Professional dancers ‘Urban Echo’ together with THEA and choreographer Stuart Vella, entertained the crowd with an outstanding performance during the Malta Music Awards.

A ballerina and a qualified pianist, THEA’s passion for music keeps growing rapidly towards innovative and original music. With an average of 2 single releases each year, THEA has engraved her music in the local music scene whilst she promotes her product internationally during various gigs she performs in foreign countries during the year.

THEA is supported by Cut Coiffeur, Make Up Artist Lorna Muliett, Top Shop, KoKo, Soul and Zero Two. THEA’s music maybe enjoyed on www.thea-music.com.

Source: Press Release

New upcoming talent is something which we aim to promote through our portal and one of the names who is seeking success and achieving is none other than Former Junior Eurosong finalists, Stefan Galea, a young teen who is set to release a brand new track entitled 'The Fittest Girl In History' composed and penned by British songwriter Paul Harper. The song has been taken from Stefan's debut album 'My Evolution' which will also be launched in due course.

The very first time that the track was debuted was on favourite channel through the television programme Malja hosted by Elaine Sam and Brandon Terribile. The message of the song depicts a young teen who is crushing about a girl within the same school. With the background of a couple of successful singles in the past couple of months including 'Take It or Leave It' written by Richard Rogers and Elizabeth Galea. It seems like Stefan will head for more success within his true genre that of Electro and RnB. The interest in his vocal abilities have seen a number of labels make contact with him. It will be quite interesting to see how that goes.

At the moment, he is being made an artist thanks to ICAN and Aiming 4 Fame. A number of performances in the music scene has boosted his image especially supporting Ira Losco at her concert  'music for life' in front a of a large 5,000 strong audience at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Ta' Qali. More gigs and events will surely make up the rest of the year for Stefan. So keep checking out the site for more news about Stefan's progress and releases which you can obtain through a number of digital music shops.

Source: Press Release

One of the well known artists in the Maltese local scene especially when it comes to speaking about the annual 'Għanja tal-Poplu' competition is none other than Corazon and yesterday night she was representing the nation in the Universong Festival which takes place in Tenerife, Spain. The competition was quite tough yet despite this, Corazon came out as a trophy winner at the end of the evening managing to finish in third place, a very well respected result in my opinion and one which the whole public and nation should be proud of when noting our musical endeavours.

The performance of Corazon shone amongst others according to our sources in fact performing the song which goes by the name 'Come Fly With Me' composed by Renato Briffa and penned by Alfred E Baldacchino, originally performed by none other than Maria Mallia when submitted in the Orfeum De Oro winning the 'Best Original Song On-Line' in the same city of Tenerife. The songwriters were asked to present the song at the Universong competition and this time round it was performed by none other than Corazon who is known for a number of local festivals in Malta. On behalf of the whole team we would like to congratulate Corazon on this achievement abroad seeing that we have maintained our top three finishing placing in this event for yet another year noting the whole results that Malta has achieved since 2006 as seen below:

Source: Universong Official Website, Facebook

The annual Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza is one of the most popular festivals on the Maltese Islands and this is due to the fact that it is the major showcase for the local language, one that should be preserved at all costs noting that it is the official language of the nation. Over the past two weeks, the programme Indifest hosted by Charles and Elaine Saliba has been aired and each and every day you have been able to listen to clips of the songs within both categories in this years' edition, voting for your favourites. In the next couple of weeks, we will be bringing you a weekly update each Saturday of the results, stating the placings at the current moment when the article is written. We would like to thank NET Television and Media.Link Communications for such an opportunity once more.

The votes are coming in at quite a fast pace when it comes to the teenage category with the competition heating up noting that three entries are fighting it out to be selected to perform on the final night of this years' edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza which is being held on Monday 19th September 2011. In fact, the total amount of votes is exceeding expectations and it is quite impressive. Below you can see the current placings for this category but of course, we are still very much in the early stages of the competition yet it is quite vital to keep things in tact because this vote counts for 50% of the qualification result.

1st Place: Jessica Cachia - SOS (Philip Vella) - 52102028

2nd Place: Angelica Portelli - Ejjew Nieqfu (Miriam Christine / Joe Chircop) - 52102021

3rd Place: Daphne Xuereb - Storja (Miriam Christine / Rita Pace) - 52102029

4th Place: Ann Marie Gauci - Flimkien (Miriam Christine / Rita Pace) - 52102022

5th Place: Maria Carabott - Mill-Ħolm għar-Realta' (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Paul Callus) - 52102027

6th Place: Michela Galea - Kważi Qatt (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Keith Zammit) - 52102025

7th Place: David u Svetlene - Int u Jien (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Joe Chircop) - 52102023

8th Place: Michela Dalli - L-Istorja Tagħna (Dominic Cini / Keith Zammit) - 52102026

9th Place: Mikaela Bajada - Kull Maħluq (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Joe Chircop) - 52102024

10th Place: Shannon u Whitney - Tiġġudikax (Dominic Cini / Rita Pace) - 52102030

In the meantime, the other category is of course for the more established artists who will be competing for the coveted title of the winner of this years' Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza which one should remember is the twentieth (20th) edition therefore making the overall mark somewhat even more special than previous years. The voting is yet to step up a gear in this category and we need to get more people voting so that the competition will be greater. We need to get you to vote to create this 'rivalry' so what are you waiting for, grab your phones and your mobiles and get voting. The update brought to you below is the result at the current moment. All results are subject to any changes in the very near future.

1st Place: Klinsmann - Ħajjitna (Paul Abela / Joe Chircop) - 52102015

2nd Place: Silent Shout - Għad Fadal Għada (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - 52102016

3rd Place: Deborah C - Fjamma (Philip Vella / Gerard J Borg) - 52102001

4th Place: Nadine, Luisana u Charlotte - Liberi (Philip Vella) - 52102011

5th Place: Marilena Farrugia - Kien Ftit Wisq (Elton Zarb / Ally) - 52102017

6th Place: Danica - Kliem Li M'Għedtlek Qatt (Mark Debono / Christopher Azzopardi) - 52102005

7th Place: Norbert Bondin - Int Tkun Hemm (Philip Vella) - 52102004

8th Place: Nadine u Fiona - Malta Ġrajjietha (Chan Vella / Alexia Schembri) - 52102007

9th Place: Ana-Maria Grima - Kif Nista? (Philip Vella) - 52102006

10th Place: Tiziana Calleja - Kollox Mill-Qalb (John David Zammit / Paul Callus) - 52102013

11th Place: Mike Spiteri - B'Rieda tal-Azzar (Ray Agius) - 52102012

12th Place: Neville Refalo - Ħajt tal-Kenn (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Joe Chircop) - 52102003

13th Place: Albertine u l-Qamħa - Skont Id-Daqqa Iż-Żifna (Dominic Cini / Giovann Attard) - 52102008

14th Place: Marilena Gauci - Dil-Qalb Kbira (Philip Vella / Joe Chircop) - 52102014

15th Place: Rita Pace - Kuraġġ (Rita Pace) - 52102018

16th Place: Audrey Marie - Ir-Ruħ tat-Tejatru (Rita Pace / Deo Grech) - 52102009

17th Place: Mark Tonna - Meta Jikkalma l-Mewġ (Augusto Cardinali / Giovann Attard) - 52102020

18th Place: Anna Azzopardi - Agħtini Jdejk (Renato Briffa / Alfred E Baldacchino) - 52102019

19th Place: Janice Mangion - Eternità (Mark Scicluna / Rita Pace) - 52102010

20th Place: Valentina Farrugia - Int Biss (Paul Abela / Joe Julia Farrugia) - 52102002

Source: KKI Committee, GO, Media.Link Communications

The theatre scene is in full swing and so are the local singers with many of them involved in different productions around the island. Spiteri Lucas Entertainment presents ‘Musicals Live’. The show will be featuring a number of names which are instantly recognisible and related to the local Eurovision scene. The singers featuring in this show will be; Debbie Scerri, Ludwig Galea, Pamela Bezzina, Eleanor Spiteri, Roger Tirazona, Neville Refalo, Kurt Calleja, Jackie Pace Delicata, Angela Spiteri and Ivan Spiteri Lucas.

The show will be featuring some of the most popular songs from different musicals and it is surely an event not to be missed for all the musicals' lovers and all those who enjoy a good night out with some fine music interpreted brilliantly by our local artists. These singers will be joined by a choir of around 50 children who will aid to give a magical atmosphere in the theatre. The choir is under the direction of Neville Refalo. This show will surely be a hit with the Maltese public who always seem to enjoy these kind of events - so to avoid any dissapointments try to grab your tickets as soon as possible.

The musical direction will be in the hands of Mark Spiteri Lucas whilst the choreography of the show is being taken care of by Keith’s Dance Studio. The spectacular show will take place at the Catholic Institute Theatre on Saturday the 29th of January 2011 at 7.30PM and another performance will be held the following day on Sunday the 30th of January 2011 at 6.00PM. Tickets are available from www.istitutkattoliku.com and from the booking office or the bar of the Catholic Institute on the following telephone numbers: 21238429/21242551. One can also contact them via their hotline on 99896638 or 99468429.

Source: Press Release

The summer season is one of the most popular with a number of music enthusiasts and this is due to the fact that our local broadcasters manage to encompass the best possible entertainment for the people at home. One of the upcoming shows which will be taking a prime-time slot each week is none other than 'Don't Stop Me Now', a reality television show hosted by Eileen Montesin on Television Malta. This will be the second season of the show, with the first one broadcasted through favourite channel. A number of stars had participated within the show including this years' Malta Eurovision Song Contest second runner-up Kurt Calleja as well as former Eurosong semi-finals Dario Bezzina and Francesca Borg, the latter of which would be the eventual winner. This time, things are different because auditions took place and those who agreed to take part could not submit their participation in anything else in order to keep the program as fresh as possible.

The program is being produced by former Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Committee Chairman, Frederick Zammit whilst hosting the features and taking care of the tasks during the program will be none other than actress and singer Christine Haber, who co-hosted the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza in the past two years. We have personally looked into the promotional shoot of the programme and can easily note that there are a number of familiar faces including former Eurosong finalist; Dario Mifsud Bonnici, former Junior Eurosong runner-up; Ylenia Vella, Sfida participants; Mandy Randon and Estelle Fenech Imbroll and Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Talent Żagħżugħ finalist; Roberta Briffa amongst others. As a treat, the people will also be able to enjoy the resident singing of none other than Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2011 runner-up Richard Edwards who missed out to Glen Vella in the last edition of the local festival with a margin of just two points.

The first two weeks will be quite important and this is because all of those who submitted their application will be singing in front of a panel of judges who will be bringing them down to a total of ten (10) finalists but then no one will be eliminated from these ten (10) as they perform a number of various songs over the weeks with the themes ranging from Eurovision to Italian to Maltese, Sixties, Soundtracks and more! It will surely be a show not to miss so next Monday, 4th July at 20:30 CET, tune in to Television Malta (TVM) for the first installment of the second season of 'Don't Stop Me Now' hosted by Eileen Montesin and aided by Christine Haber.

Source: Press Release