2015 - 2016 Season Booklet

Page 1


2015 - 2016



Leader : Marcelline Agius

Board of Directors


ounded in 1968, the Orchestra was formerly known as the Manoel Theatre Orchestra. It became an independent body in 1997 when it was officially named the National Orchestra of Malta, and underwent its final transformation in 2008 when it was further extended and became known as the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO). Under its new leadership, the MPO today continues to pride itself in developing its vision of delivering music of the highest calibre on the Maltese islands while also promoting our musical heritage abroad.

Viktor Vella, STILLS

Sigmund Mifsud, Ruth Micallef, Toni Abela, Mark Attard Montalto, Marthese Azzopardi, Rita Cutajar, Alexei Galea Cavallazzi, Jean Killick

Executive & Artistic Team Executive Chairman: Sigmund Mifsud Principal Conductor & Artistic Director: Brian Schembri Resident Conductor: Michael Laus Guest Leader: Carmine Lauri Financial Controller: Reuben Sammut Marketing Manager: Maria Blanco Operations Manager: Michael Aquilina Logistic Coordinator: Tony Mizzi HR Officer: John Saliba






SIGMUND MIFSUD It is my great pleasure to welcome you to the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra’s 2015-2016 concert season, which includes a vast programme of symphonic repertoire as well as an exciting range of varied genres of music. This is a tangible reflection of how the new developments and ventures happening within the MPO have widened our visibility both nationally and internationally, initiated productive collaborations with new clients and above all brought our infectious love of music to ever-increasing audiences. I can assure you that this season all our musicians and guest artists, led by Principal Conductor Brian Schembri, will continue to give you an enjoyable and enriching experience. As in previous years it is my pleasure to announce a stimulating programme series happening at the Robert Samut Hall. I am particularly delighted to mention our educational and outreach programmes which this year will again include productions for school children and families. Throughout the season we will stregthen our collaborative projects with Valletta 2018, the Arts Council Malta, the Office of the Prime

Minister and NnG Promotions for the much-loved open air concerts in July. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our partners and sponsors for their numerous support. Further details will continue to be announced at a later stage throughout the season, including information and concerts by our Malta Youth Orchestra and the work of the MPO Academy. Kindly visit our website, subscribe to our online newsletter and join our lively community on social media networks, so that you will keep in touch and updated about the latest events. I would also like to invite you to support us and become part of our growing family through our MPO Loyalty membership scheme. Finally, on behalf of my well esteemed colleagues and the MPO, it is my privilege to invite you to come and join us in our musical journey this year. We look forward to seeing you, whether you choose to just stop by at one of our pjazza performances, come to one of our unique events, or embrace the entire varied selection of concerts there is on offer.

Loyal to my firm belief in the power of the great masterpieces of symphonic music on the spiritual development of society and individual, this season reflects a special care for a diversity of tastes and expectations. Hard work by all involved in not always easy conditions is indeed bearing fruit. The orchestra is developing into an exciting artistic ensemble. Its public image has been enhanced and the MPO is slowly but steadily becoming a household name as well as a key player in Malta’s cultural scene. Thanks to our collective effort we are not only improving our artistic aptitudes, but also attracting attention of professional stakeholders, artists in search of recording prospects, producers and reviewers. In doing so, we have managed to develop an ever-increasing public of loyal patrons as well as newcomers to our fantastic adventure. Nothing can replace the feeling one gets performing in a large group of musicians, with which each and every individual is essential to the magnificent resulting sound of a symphony orchestra.

However, it is essential for musicians not to neglect their own individuality and to develop it to its full artistic potential. In this sense, the MPO is investing even more in the opportunities that musicians may have to perform chamber music and solo concertos. The RSH Concert series is developing into a regular showcase of MPO musicians in a more intimate solo or chamber ensemble environment. It is exactly because of the importance that I give to this element in any musician’s development, that I am truly looking forward to our season’s closing concert which will involve no less than 11 soloists performing in solo concertos or concertante works. The journey is long and the paths are not always straight or easy. However, I am sure that with our passionate love for music, our strong belief in our social vocation and our professional commitment to always strive for excellence, our dear public and sponsors will always be there to share our journey and become an active partner in our exciting future.

SEPTEMBER 2015 CLIFF ZAMMIT STEVENS IN CONCERT 4 September Pjazza Teatru Rjal, Valletta - 8:00pm Programme includes:

1565 THE MUSICAL 6 & 7 September Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 8:00pm Programme:

1565 The Musical Concert version Music: Paul Abea Text: Malcolm Galea

Tosti: Ideale Donizetti: Una Furtiva Lagrima Dvorak: Song to the moon Tchaikovsky: Kuda Kuda Borodin: Polovetzian Dances from Prince Igor

Conductor: Paul Abela Soloists: Eleanor Spiteri, Roger Tirazona,

Conductor: Natalie Murray Beale Soloists: Cliff Zammit Stevens and

A musical set in Malta during what is one of the most significant events in the Mediterranean - The Great Siege of Malta in 1565 – and follows the story of a young knight who lives through love, loss and death. The original soundtrack, which is at once patriotically glorious and heart-rendering beautiful, will be performed by the Malta Philharmnoioc Orchestra, a 100-strong choir and a cast of star soloists, under the baton of the composer himself.

Hannah Sandison

Maltese tenor Cliff Zammit Stevens returns home for his seventh summer concert, where he will serenade his audience with a handpicked programme that includes pieces by Puccini, Donizetti and Tchaikovsky. The concert will feature the MPO under the baton of Natalie Murray Beale and with the participation of guest soprano Hannah Sandison.

Georgina Abela, Joseph Zammit, Francesco Nicodeme, Nadia Vella, Rachel Camilleri Fabri, Mark Tonna and Cliff Zammit Stevens

ROCKESTRA 12 September Malta Fairs and Convention Centre, Ta Qali - 8:00pm Progamme includes music by: Queen Led Zeppelin Coldplay Pink Floyd Christina Perry Ozzy Nirvana Zucchero

Conductor: Sigmund Mifsud Soloists: Pawlu Borg Bonaci, Matthew

James Borg, Marc Storace, Mikaela Attard, Christopher Grech Rockestra is a unique event, bringing together a huge line-up of well-renowned Maltese artists, performing a varied programme of rock and popular songs, accompanied by the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, under the musical direction of Sigmund Mifsud and artistic direction of Pawlu Borg Bonaci. This event, which is in aid of the Malta Community Chest Fund, never fails to give the crowd a truly unforgettable and amazing experience.


Free Entrance

Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm Programme includes:

Isouard: Jeannot et Colin, Ah quelle peine extreme Camilleri: Il-Weghda, Intermezzo Puccini: Manon Lescaut, Sola perduta abbandonata Wagner: Tannhauser, Overture

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloist: Miriam Cauchi Maltese soprano Miriam Cauchi joins the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra in a concert conducted by the MPO’s principal conductor Brian Schembri, on this special occasion marking Malta’s Independence Day. The programme comprises of well-loved arias from 19th and 20th Century Operas, including vocal and orchestral works by Maltese composers Isouard and Camilleri.

MALTA FILM COMMISSION 90TH ANNIVERSARY 25 & 26 September Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 8:30pm Programme includes:

Troy: Suite Count of Montecristo: Suite Da Vinci Code: Chevaliers de Sangreal Midnight Express: The Chase Theme Gladiator: Now We Are Free

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloist: Julie Zahra The Malta Film Commission will be celebrating its 90th Anniversary in style, with a concert by the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by principal conductor Brian Schembri. The concert brings to the audience a well-researched programme, including famous themes from epic movies and uncovering some of the lesser-known music, all featured in films that were shot in Malta throughout the years.

MEDITERRANEAN OPERA & MUSIC CRUISE CONCERT 28 September Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 6:30pm Programme:

Haydn: Symphony No.45 ‘Farewell’ Boccherini: Musica Notturna delle strade di Madrid Mozart: Divertimento K251

Conductor: Michael Laus This programme presents a delightful selection of music from the classical period and will feature the MPO Chamber Orchestra conducted by our resident conductor Michael Laus. This orchestral concert is being organised as part of the Renaissance Tours Australia cruise trip around the Mediterranean. Free entrance is generously offered for Music students and there are limited places available for the general public.




7 October

17 October

Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm

Aurora Theatre, Victoria, Gozo - 7:30pm

Manoel Theatre, Valletta, on 2nd October - 8:00pm, on 3rd October - 11:00am


Music Director: Colin Attard Soloists: Elena Mosuc (Violetta); Stefan Pop


Conductor: Hermann Farrugia Frantz Soloists: Francesca Aquilina, Charles Vincenti,

2-3 October

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Farrugia Frantz: Canticum Vitae ‘Song of Life’

Glinka: Ruslan and Ludmila overture Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations Arban: Carnival of Venice Brahms: Symphony Nr 2

Alfred Camilleri Choir: Coro Bel Canto Artistic Director: Pierre Portelli

This concert presents a world-premiere performance of a newly commissioned work on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of Dar tal-Providenza. The Oratorio Canticum Vitae is composed by Hermann Farrugia Frantz, with words by Mons Lawrence Gatt based on biblical text. The production at the MCC is under the artistic direction of Pierre Portelli, with Maltese soloists, Coro Bel Canto and Malta Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by the composer Hermann Farrugia Frantz.

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloist: Sergei Nakariakov World-renowned musician Sergei Nakariakov, dubbed ‘the Paganini of the Trumpet’, will be gracing the stage and enthralling our audience at this year’s Manoel Theatre’s Opening Concert. The curtain raiser of Malta’s National Theatre, is a joint collaboration concert between the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra and the Manoel Theatre, and will be under the musical direction of the MPO’s principal conductor Brian Schembri.The Saturday morning concert is being hosted by the Maltese National Commission for UNESCO, under the patronage of the President of Malta.

Sergei Nakariakov, Trumpet

(Alfredo); Marzio Giossi (Germont) Stage Director: Novella Tabili

The annual Gozo October opera season opens with another Verdi favourite, La Traviata. This is returning to the Aurora after being last produced there in 1998. With a plot that sends us at the heart of 1700’s Paris, La Traviata has always been considered as the ultimate operatic fashionparade of music, drama, scenery and costumes. These helped the opera maintain its ratings and secure performance records to this day and age. As always, the Aurora Theatre commits itself to ever-increasing artistic benchmarks.


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Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm Programme:

Graun: Horn Quartet in E flat major Báchorek: Musical Maiden for Flute, Violin, Viola & Cello Ries: Flute Quartet in C major, No.1 Seiber: Fantasy for Flute, Horn, violin, viola & cello


MPO Chamber Ensemble:

Flute, Horn and String Quartet Fiorella Camilleri (Flute); Marco Cola (French Horn); Reggie Clews & Marcelline Agius (Violins); Nadia Debono (Viola); Peter Flanagan (Cello) This first MPO Chamber Music concert of the season, highlighting the French Horn and Flute, brings together six members of the MPO who will be performing in various combinations. The programme includes some rarely heard ensemble works spanning a period of over 200 years.

LA BOHÉME (OPERA PRODUCTION) 29 & 31 October Astra Theatre, Victoria, Gozo - 7:30pm Music Director: Joe Vella Soloists: Miriam Cauchi (Mimí), Leonardo Caimo

(Rodolfo), Davide Cecconi (Marcello), Oana Andra (Musetta), Louis Andrew Cassar (Schaunard), Gabriele Sagona (Colline). Stage Director: Enrico Stinchelli Teatru Astra will be presenting Puccini’s bestloved opera, La Bohéme, at the start of the yearly Festival Mediterranea.This is a unique festival on the island of Gozo, celebrating 7,000 years of cultural heritage and unveils Gozo as a mosaic of Mediterranean civilization. Teatru Astra’s production of La Bohéme, with its star cast of local and international artists, is sure to set the bench-mark very high at the start of this festival.



St. Paul’s Cathedral, Mdina - 7:30pm Programme:

Gravina: Stabat Mater

Conductor: Christopher Muscat Soloist: Miriam Cauchi

3 November Alte Oper, Frankfurt, Germany - 8:00pm

The annual concert organised by APS bank is going to be part of this year’s Biennale festival in Mdina. The Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Christopher Muscat, will join forces with soprano Miriam Cauchi and the Bel Canto Choir in the world-premiere and recording Euchar Gravina’s Stabat Mater, which had received the Special Jury Prize in the APS Bank Composition Competition held in 2012.

Programme includes: a vast selection of tenor arias from well-known Operas and works by Maltese composers

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloist: Joseph Calleja The Central Bank of Malta, under the auspices of the European Central Bank, is presenting a rich variety of activities representing Malta’s rich cultural heritage, as part of the European Cultural Days 2015 programme in Frankfurt. This grand opening concert marks the launch of the events and is headlined by the world-renowned Maltese tenor, Joseph Calleja, who will be accompanied by the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra under the musical direction of none other than the MPO’s Principal Conductor Brian Schembri.

Free Entrance

Joseph Calleja, Tenor Decca/© Simon Fowler


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Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm Programme:

Bach/Webern: Fuga (Ricercata) a 6 voci Bach: Concerto for Two Violins Stravinsky: Danses Concertantes Handel: Harp Concerto in B flat Major Op. 4 No. 6

Roberta Attard & Fiona Giambra, violins; Britt Arend, harp The first MPO Chamber Orchestra Concert of the season, aimed at giving audiences the opportunity to hear MPO musicians performing in a more intimate setting. This concert presents three soloists from the MPO performing in two Baroque Concertos, flanked on either side by two works offering a 20th century salute to Bach.

CHOGM CONCERT 25 November St. John’s Cathedral, Valletta - 7:30pm

Free Entrance


Peter Sculthorpe: Earth Cry Larysa Kuzmenko: Behold the night Charles Camilleri: New Idea Symphony

Conductor: Brian Schembri Choir: Mirabitur Youth Choir (Simone Attard) The CHOGM Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting being held in Malta this month is an opportunity to celebrate some of our country’s best artistic and cultural heritage. The concert, in one of Malta’s most beautiful Churches consists of works by composers from Commonwealth countries. The programme starts with the primordial sounds of Earth, travels through the fantastic tale of a starry night and accompany the birth of an idea towards the triumph of creativity.

DECEMBER 2015 NOTES OF FAITH 4 December Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm

Free Entrance


Albert Pace: In Amore Illo Ardeas Cristina Vilallonga: Aspiratio Karl Fiorini: Rêves Obscurs Doron Kima: Seeds of Hope

Conductor: Raoul Lay Soloists: Bashir Abdel Al - Oud; Nizar Al Issa - Nay ‘Notes of Faith’, an initiative of the peacebuilding arts NGO CARAVAN, is a concert of works by four contemporary composers, including a worldpremiere of the work ‘Seed of Faith’ by Jewish composer Doron Kima. The concert offers the audience a stimulating and challenging opportunity to contemplate fundamental eternal questions of existence, faith, harmony and peace through the ethereal acoustic experience of outstanding musicianship.


ORGAN RECITAL SERIES 1 6 December Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm

11 December Loyalty Scheme

Programme includes:

Bach: Preludium et Fuga in G BWV 550 Mendelssohn: Sonata in F minor, Op.65 Nr1 Boely: Fantasie et Fuge, Op.18 Nr 6 Liszt: Transcendental Etude No.10 ‘Appasionata’ (arr., Simone Vebber)

Organist: Simone Vebber This first concert in the Organ Recital Series at Robert Samut Hall, is hosted by the Malta International Organ Festival. Organist Simone Vebber presents to the audience a colourful recital of traditional organ works from the 17th, 18th and 19th century, as well as his own transcription of Liszt Transcendental Etude ‘Appassionata’, originally written for piano.

Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm



16 December

19 & 21 December

Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm

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Free Entrance

Programme includes:

John Galea: Innu tal-Universita Rossini: William Tell Overture Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on Greensleeves Tchaikovsky: Suite from Swan Lake Saint-Saens: Bacchanale


Sibelius: Karelia Suite Nielsen: Flute Concerto Sibelius: Symphony Nr 2

Conductor: Christophe Gedschold Soloist: Laura Falzon

Conductor: Michael Laus The University of Malta’s Foundation Day Concert is a tribute to all the students for their efforts and enterprise during their years of study to all those who support them during their time at University. It is also part of an endeavour to valorise the graduate’s standing as an important element in Maltese society, through a celebration of pleasant classical music.

The MPO, under the baton of Christophe Gedschold, presents an enriching programme celebrating Carl Nielsen and Jean Sibelius on the 150th anniversary of their births (1865). The event is part of the many tributes that have been held around the world this year to honor two of Scandinavia’s greatest composers. This concert will also welcome Maltese national, flautist Laura Falzon, who will be performing one of Nielson’s celebrated concertos.

Laura Falzon, Flute

Free Entrance

Venue 19 Dec: St George Basilica, Rabat, Gozo - 8:00pm Venue 21 Dec: St Julian’s Parish Church, St. Julians - 8:00pm Programme includes:

Galea: Missa Fons Vitae Galea: Ave Maria (premiere) Handel: Hallelujah Chorus from The Messiah A Celebration of Carols

Conductor: John Galea Choir: Chorus Urbanus Marking the 40th anniversary of Chorus Urbanus, this programme is a choral offering in true celebratory Christmas spirit. Featuring works by Gozitan composer, John Galea, including a world premiere of his Ave Maria, the concert also includes a delightful selection of Christmas Carols and the rousing Handel’s Hallelujah chorus.


Free Entrance

3 January Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm Programme includes:

Strauss: Pizzicato Polka Tchaikovsky: Eugene Onegin - Polonaise Donizetti: L’Elisir d’Amore - ‘Una furtiva lagrima’ Camilleri: Maltese Dances Brodzsky: Be my love

Conductor: Joseph Debrincat Soloist: Nico Darmanin The MPO under the auspices of the President of Malta, presents a joyful festive programme to start off the New Year. Maltese tenor Nico Darmanin joins the MPO, conducted by Joseph Debrincat, in a varied programme which includes all- time favourites of orchestral and operatic works.

MPO CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES CONCERT 2 10 January Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm

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Programme: Dvorak: String quartet nr 12 ‘American’ Tchaikovsky: String Quartet Nr 3 MPO Chamber Ensemble:

Yaro String Quartet Natalia Filipenko, Philip Orlov (Violins), Aureliano Balducci (Viola), Yaroslav Miklukho (Cello) Another of MPOs distinguished Chamber Ensembles, the Yaro String Quartet make their debut at the Robert Samut Hall, with two major compositions strongly embedded in the String Quartet repertoire.

INSPIRED BY BAROQUE 20 January Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm

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Respighi: Gli Uccelli Poulenc: Concert Champêtre for Harpsichord and Orchestra Bach/Respighi: Chorale Prelude “Nun komm der Heiden Heiland” Gorjecki: Concerto for Harpsichord and String Orchestra Stravinsky: Pulcinella Suite

Conductor: Philip Walsh Soloist: Mahan Esfahani The Valletta International Baroque Festival has been conceived purposely as a celebration of Valletta’s baroque identity, with the first Festival being held in January 2013. During the Festival Valletta resounds with music from the period when it was built. The concert presents to the audience a programme of Baroque inspired works, with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Philip Walsh.


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Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm Programme:

Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto Tchaikovsky: Symphonie Pathetique

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloist: Nemanja Radulovic MPO’s Principal Conductor Brian Schembri, joins forces with internationally acclaimed Franco-Serbian violinist Nemanja Radulovic, in a programme of two monumental works by Tchaikovsky. The melodic, breathtaking and life assertive Concerto is in stark contrast to the monumental Pathetique, a profoundly personal symphonic testament of the troubled and tormented life of this giant composer.

Nemanja Radulovic, Violin

2014 - 2015 HIGHLIGHTS


MPO ORCHESTRAL CONCERT SERIES 2 5 February Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm

12 & 13 February

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Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm

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Stravinsky: Concerto in D for Strings Gorecki: Concerto Notturno for violin and orchestra Schubert: Symphony Nr 5


Debussy: Prélude à l’après-midi d’un Faune Mahler: Ruckert Lieder Mahler: Symphony Nr 4

Conductor: Michael Laus Soloist: Agnieszka Kuzma

Conductor: Jean-Marc Burfin Soloist: Andriana Yordanova Jean-Marc Burfin returns to conduct the MPO in a concert of magnificent orchestral works. Following the dream of a flute-playing faun in the opening Debussy, Andriana Yordanova performs the wonderful series of songs that explore Mahler’s complex personality. The Symphony in second half transports the listener from the unforgettable sounds of flutes and sleigh bells, to a skeleton playing the dance of death on his violin and a solemn procession leading to a child’s naïve vision of heaven.


Three centuries, three composers, three different worlds… and yet the power of music is such that these differences can in fact unite in a celebration of a variety of emotions and unlimited imagination. This concert once again features musicians from the MPO as soloists in their own right, in an intimate setting of chamber orchestral music.

Andriana Yordanova, Soprano

20 February 20 February Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm

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Disney Fantasia Live in Concert including compositions by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Debussy, Stravinsky, Ponchielli, Dukas, Elgar, Respighi and Saint-Saëns


Conductor: Brian Schembri

Nothing alights the imagination quite like Disney productions, and following last year’s hugely successful concert, we are bringing to Malta the magical Fantasia! The MPO, conducted by principal conductor Brian Schembri, will thrill the audience in a magical adventure featuring an animated production accompanied by some of the greatest classical repertoire ever composed.



Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm Programme:

Pergolesi: Stabat Mater Anton Nani: Responsori a Quartetto per il Giovedì Santo

Conductor: Michael Laus Soloists: Miriam Gauci (Soprano); Claire

Massa (Alto); Christopher Busietta (Tenor); Alfred Camilleri (Baritone); Albert Buttigieg (Bass) Choir : Goldberg Vocal Ensemble In a choral programme intentionally conceived to be performed during the Lent season, resident conductor Michael Laus leads the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra and a line-up of some of Malta’s most recognised names in the classical music scene. Nani’s rarely performed work, which was originally composed for Maundy Thursday service, is coupled with the monumental musical setting of Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater.



16, 17, 19, 20 March Loyalty Scheme

Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm Programme includes:

Buxtehude - Toccata in F major Guilmant - Marche funèbre et Chant séraphique Messiaen - Le Banquet Céleste Bossi - Ave Maria, Op.104 No. 2 Gigout - Toccata in B minor

Organist: Roberta Bugeja In this second organ recital of the RSH Concert series, young organist Robert Bugeja offers our public a vast programme by essential composers of organ music, with a particular reference to the theme of Easter.

Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm Programme:

Gluck: Orphee et Euridice

Music Director: Philip Walsh Stage Director: Denise Mulholland Set Design: Pierre Portelli Costume Design: Luke Azzopardi Soloists: Francesca Aquilina (Amour);

Gillian Zammit (Eurydice); Hadar Halevy / Lucia Cirillo (Orphee) This is a new production of Berlioz’s 1859 version of the opera Orphée et Eurydice originally composed by Christoph Willibald Gluck based on the myth of Orpheus and set to a libretto by Ranieri de’ Calzabigi. It belongs to the genre of the azione teatrale, meaning an opera on a mythological subject with choruses and dancing. With the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Philip Walsh and stage direction in the hands of Denise Mulholland, this Manoel Theatre’s Opera Production is set to mesmerise its audience into magical, mysterious world.

Philip Walsh, Conductor




3 April

Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm

Robert Samut Hall, Florianat - 7:30pm

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Programme includes:

Vella: Pezzo Per Quintetto d’Ottoni Bernstein: West Side Story: Bernstein Zahra: Loghba Horovitz: Variations on a Paganini Theme Arnold: Brass Quintet

9 April

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Conil - Ariane et Dionysos Prokofiev - Symphony No. 7 Karl Fiorini - Of Gods and Dogs Beethoven - Choral Fantasy Op. 80

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloists: Lucia Micallef, piano;

MPO Chamber Ensemble: MPO Brass Quintet

Claire Debono, soprano Choir: New Choral Singers (Simone Attard)

The MPO Brass Quintet is a nationally acclaimed ensemble who have been delighting audiences with music of great variety exhibiting their technical expertise and musical flexibility. This programme, presented as part of the RSH Chamber Music concert series is typical in its diversity, freshness and appealing repertoire.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the ISO, festival artistic director Karl Fiorini has programmed a kaleidoscopic programme of different soundscapes. An ephemeral opening leads us through Prokofiev’s effortless and enchanting songfulness in his last Symphony. In sharp contrast, the torrid texts of the Andalusian poet Ana Bocanegra Brasco of Fiorini’s work will be challenged by Beethoven concluding chorus exulting in an ode to music and “the sounds of harmony in our life”.

Kevin Abela, Stephen Murphy (Trumpet), Marco Cola (French Horn), Dennis Camilleri (Trombone), Paul Borg (Tuba)


MPO ORCHESTRAL CONCERT SERIES 3 15 April Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm

23 February April 20

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Aurora Theatre, Victoria, Gozo - 7:30pm Production House: Gaulitanus Choir Music Director: Colin Attard



Gershwin: Piano Concerto in F Borodin: Symphony Nr 2

For the third year running the Gaulitanus Choir will be putting on a full-scale operatic production as the highlight event of Gaulitana: A Festival of Music, its annual festival now with the EFFE label and in its 10th edition. After Puccini’s Tosca and Verdi’s Rigoletto, it’s the turn of Rossini’s comic opera and masterpiece Il Barbiere di Siviglia. The opera, a local favourite, is returning to the Maltese stage after an absence of several years.

Conductor/Soloist: Wayne Marshall A surprising and exciting choice of two great works, which demonstrate both composers endeavouring to transcend their respective popular music culture to symphonic heights. While Borodin shows his admiration of the great heroic past of Russia, capturing its essence and that of Russian folk music in his work, Gershwin cultivates his American vernacular - jazz.

Wayne Marshall, Conductor & Pianist

FAMILY FANFARE WITH THE MPO 29 & 30 April 20 February

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Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta 10:00am (schools) and 5:00pm (families) After last year’s successful Family Fanfare Concert, UK’s CBeebies production will once again be joining forces with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra. Come join us for a fun and exciting journey through the world of orchestral music. Listen to some of the world’s most famous Classics and learn about dynamics, tempo and so much more in this interactive, fun filled event. This is an opportunity not to be missed. Let your children feel the music and be transported in a realm of magical music-making.



MPO ORCHESTRAL CONCERT SERIES 4 6 May Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm

13 & 14 May Loyalty Scheme


Mozart: Overture Don Giovanni Mozart: Piano Concerto D minor K 466 Schumann: Symphony Nr 3 in E-flat “Rhenish”

Conductor/Soloist: Michael Laus Two works by Mozart, composed only two years apart, both written in the dark, chilling key of D-minor and depicting the composer at his most dramatic. Two blasting chords announce the beginning of the masterful Don Giovanni Overture, which provides the perfect canvas for the great Piano Concerto. The second half transports the audience through five movements of music, in Schumann’s last and arguably most beautiful Symphony.


Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm Programme:

Tansman: Suite Concertante for oboe and chamber orchestra (world premiere) Tansman: Clarinet Concerto Tansman: Double Concerto for oboe, clarinet and strings

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloists: Fabrizio Meloni (clarinet); Diego Dini Ciacci (oboe)

“It is obvious that I owe much to France, but anyone who has ever heard my compositions cannot have doubt that I have been, am and forever will be a Polish composer”. Alexandre Tansman (1897-1986). Internationally renowned composer and virtuoso pianist, Tansman is best known for his French neoclassical style of music. This concert, presenting some of his lesser known works, is part of the process of our new recording project, proposed to CPO label.

27 February May 20 Manoel Theatre, Valletta - 8:00pm

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Vella Gregory: Rhytmii Vitae Poulenc: Concerto for two pianos Britten: Scottish Ballade Dvorak: Symphony Nr 6

Conductor: Kaspar Zehnder Soloists: Natacha Chircop & Marco Rivoltini An eclectic programme of interesting and challenging works, performed by the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Swiss conductor Kaspar Zehnder. Poulenc’s Concerto for two pianos, performed in this concert by Marco Rivoltini and Natacha Chircop, marked the beginning of the composer’s ‘great period’. Equally great is Dvorak’s monumental Symphony in D major, capturing both the Czech national style and standard Germanic classical-romantic form.

Kaspar Zehnder, Conductor


ORGAN RECITAL SERIES 3 5 June Robert Samut Hall, Floriana - 7:30pm

18 June Loyalty Scheme

Programme includes:

Works by César Franck, Léon Boëllmann, Louis Vierne and Charles-Marie Widor.

Organist: Hugo Agius Muscat Celebrated Maltese organist, Hugo Agius Muscat, concludes this year’s series of organ recitals at Robert Samut Hall, with a programme featuring some of the greatest music from the organ repertoire.

Mediterranean Conference Centre, Valletta - 7:30pm

Loyalty Scheme


Rossini: La Gazza Ladra Overture Gregson: Trombone Concerto Menotti: Triplo Concerto da Nino Rota: Divertimento Concertante for Double Bass Ravel: Bolero

Conductor: Brian Schembri Soloists: Roderick Bugeja (trombone); Emilia

Wisniawska (violin), Nadia Debono (viola), Peter Flanagan (cello), Chiara Telleri (oboe), Giuseppe Recchia (clarinet), Ulrike Baumann (bassoon), Britt Arend (harp), Charlene Farrugia (piano), Daniel Cauchi (percussion); Gjorgji Cincievski (double bass) MPO’s artistic director and principal conductor Brian Schembri will conduct a fantastic showcase of MPO’s musicians. The programme features an exciting choice of concerti, including Menotti’s Concerto for 9 soloists, followed by Ravel Bolero’s crescendo of famous instrumental solos leading to a real festive ending to the season.



VIAF Inaugural Concert 8 June

23 June St. John’s Cathedral, Valletta - 7:30pm

St George’s Basilica, Victoria - 8:00 pm Programme includes:


Of sacred music for choir and orchestra


Conductor: Michael Laus Choir: Goldberg Ensemble The annual St. John’s Day Concert is organised by ‘The Maltese Association of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta’ in order to raise funds for its Charitable Activities. This year’s concert will be the sixth annual charity concert, and will feature choral sacred music by the Goldberg Ensemble and the Malta Philharmonic Concert conducted by Michael Laus.

Works by Mozart and Beethoven Conductor: Joseph Vella

VIAF Closing Choral and Orchestral Concert 11 July

St George’s Basilica, Victoria - 8:00 pm Programme includes: Works by Mendelssohn, Brahms, and Vella Conductor: Joseph Vella

MPO Soloists

Now in its 19th edition the Victoria International Arts Festival is the longest-running festival of its kind on the islands. It offers a full five weeks of uninterrupted cultural activities, including orchestral, chamber and vocal concerts, choirs and big bands, lectures, exhibitions, and master classes. The Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of the festival artistic director Joseph Vella, has become a yearly feature in this festival.


MPO OPEN AIR CLASSICS MPO Orchestral concerts in July are held outdoors.

Apply online at www.maltaorchestra.com.mt/loyalty

Further information for these concerts will be published closer to the date and will be available on our website.

Loyalty Scheme

GOLD MEMBERSHIP – €100 MPO Gold Membership Card Free access to orchestral rehearsals Priority booking with notification of pre-ticket sales 40% on all selected Loyalty Scheme Concerts Free reserved ticket for Girgenti Concert (July 2016)





2 July

16 July

Date to be confirmed

Date to be confirmed

Pjazza Teatru Rjal, Valletta

Venue to be confirmed

Girgenti Palace, l/o Siggiewi

Venue to be confirmed

FREE Entrance

Conductor : Brian Schembri

FREE Entrance by Invitation



(Loyalty Scheme)

Free access to orchestral rehearsals Access to ‘behind the scenes’ and opportunities to meet the musicians 50% discount on all selected Loyalty Scheme Concerts *Restricted for students (under 16-yrs old or with valid student card)

MPO PJAZZA PERFORMERS Look out for MPO Musicians performing in pjazzas in Malta and Gozo throughout the months of March, April, May and June. Audiences will have the opportunity to listen to live performances and speak to our musicians in an informal environment.

STUDENT MPO CLUB – €25* MPO Student Club Card

SILVER MEMBERSHIP – €50 MPO Silver Membership Card Free access to orchestral rehearsals Priority booking with notification of pre-ticket sales

MPO performing at Pjazza Teatru Rjal

25% discount on all selected Loyalty Scheme Concerts

PLATINUM MEMBERSHIP – €150 MPO Platinum Membership Card Free access to orchestral rehearsals Priority booking with notification of pre-ticket sales 50% discount on all selected Loyalty Scheme Concerts Free ticket for MPO Opening Concert at MT (September 2015) Free reserved ticket for Girgenti Concert (July 2016) Access to VIP reception at MCC and MT Concerts

Platinum+ Membership – €200 MPO Platinum+ Membership Card Access to orchestral rehearsals Priority booking with notification of pre-ticket sales 50% discount on all selected Loyalty Scheme Concerts Free ticket for MPO Opening Concert at MT (September 2015) Free reserved tickets for Girgenti Concert (July 2016) Access to VIP reception at MCC and MT Concerts Special discounts available at selected Restaurants on Concert Dates

The MPO also has a PATRONAGE SCHEME MPO Patrons are first and foremost individuals who love great music and want to share the MPO’s vision of bringing the best quality music to the greatest amount of people Individuals may choose to support the work of the MPO on an annual subscription. Kindly express your interest by contacting us on marketing@ maltaorchestra.com


THANK YOU The MPO is proud to enjoy associations with the following cultural entities, corporate sponsors and individual patrons. Their generous support allows us to reach further and touch more lives.


Teatru Manoel

Website : www.teatrumanoel.com.mt Telephone : (+356) 2124 6389 E-mail : bookings@teatrumanoel.com.mt Address : Box Office, 11 Old Theatre Street, Valletta Ticket Prices: €10 - €30

St. James Cavalier

(for Concerts at Robert Samut Hall) Website : www.sjcav.org Telephone : (+356) 2122 3200 Email : boxoffice@sjcav.org Address : St. James Cavalier, Castille Square, Valletta Ticket Prices: €8 - €15

Mediterranean Conference Centre

Website : www.mcc.com.mt Telephone : (+356) 2559 5750/1 Email : bookings@mcc.com.mt Address : Mediterranean Conference Centre, Mediterranean Street, Valletta Ticket Prices: €15 - €35

Aurora Opera House Website : Telephone : Email : Address :

http://teatruaurora.com (+356) 7904 5779 teatruaurora@leone.org.mt Teatru tal-Opra Aurora / Aurora Opera House 100 Republic Street, Victoria, Gozo

Website : Telephone : Email : Address :

www.mediterranea.com.mt (+356) 21550985 / (+356) 79256897 bookings@mediterranea.com.mt Teatru Astra, 9 Republic Street, Victoria, Gozo

Teatru Astra

For Discounts and Special Offers, check out our

MPO Loyalty Scheme

Prices are indicative of typical ticket price range. Check with booking offices for specific prices for each event.


The Malta Philharmonic Orchestra Website : Telephone : Email : Address :

http://www.maltaorchestra.com (+356) 2124 4473 info@maltaorchestra.com National Orchestra Ltd., 1, Triq John Lopez, Floriana, Malta

Join us on / Maltaphilharmonicorchestra / MPO@MaltaPhil Artists, programmes and dates are correct at the time of going to print. MPO reserves the right to change them if necessary. Visit our website fot the latest updates.

Mr & Mrs Remco Slik (Benefactors) • Mr Patrick Xuereb (Patron) • Mr & Mrs Smith (Patron)

Publisher: Malta Philharmonic Orchestra • Editor: Maria Blanco • Design & Layout: kuluri.com.mt • Printers: 5ive Star Printing Services