Page 1


A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT Another year has come and gone and here we are, together again, celebrating the Christmas and New Year period. Throughout 2013 the band has enjoyed sharing with you some wonderful music at the many festivities we perform. This, of course, wouldn’t take place without the commitment of our members who make great time and effort to attend not only the programs, but importantly, our weekly rehearsals in preparation. They have truly earned their Christmas break! In this year’s magazine, we hear about two such members: Joe Zahra and Reno Galea. These two show the sort of dedication that keeps us going – all without picking up an instrument! In 2014, we will be introducing a new initiative to attract new members – the Music Tuition Program. More information is available on Page 10. I would like to thank the magazine sponsors and in particular, our major sponsor, CB Travel Adventures, and other main sponsor, Thuema Engineering, and I would also like to acknowledge those who have donated music or money through

the year. A special thanks also goes to La Valette Social Centre where we hold our weekly rehearsals. I thank my fellow Committee members, all band members and in particular our Bandmaster, Scott Turner, who has always shown tremendous leadership and rapport with all members. And thanks to you – our friends, supporters and audiences. We hope you continue enjoying our performances for many years to come. May you all have a safe and joyous Christmas and New Year. Antoine Mangion President


We remember at this time our friend and fellow band member Louis ‘Gigi’ Said, who passed away on 15 March this year. Gigi was one of the 12 original members of our band and played the Tenor Saxophone. He was a much loved and admired friend to all of us and he will be sadly missed.

Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. Amen.

Printer: EAZY Printing and Copying - 96 O’Neill St, GUILDFORD - 0401 682 119 - 9721 3477

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14


COMMITTEE 2013-2014

Roderick Pirotta Secretary

Theddy Galea Delegate

Antoine Mangion President

Chris Borg Vice President

Robert Cutajar Treasurer

Charles Cauchi Assistant Treasurer

Scott Turner Delegate -Bandmaster

PO Box 76, Doonside NSW 2767 President: Antoine Mangion

Secretary: Roderick Pirotta

Treasurer: Robert Cutajar

0405 233 144

9670 2020

0402 020 630


A MESSAGE FROM THE BANDMASTER Another wonderful year of working with Our Lady Queen of Peace Maltese Band has passed and I am looking forward to many more. I am continuously impressed by the dedication and commitment of the Band members. Our performance repertoire is always increasing and the skill level of every musician is evidently developing to a very high standard. I would like to thank every member and associate member for their continued service to the Band. Your contributions create a very comfortable rehearsal and performance environment that encourage all to perform for enjoyment and love of music making in collaboration with others. I look forward to seeing the implementation and development of our tuition program. I would like to thank the com-

mittee for their hard work in creating this program, in particular Roderick Pirotta. Every moment I spend working with the Band is thoroughly enjoyable. Whenever you hear the expressive and energetic music that the band produces, you’ll understand why.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14

Scott Turner Bandmaster



By Greg Caruana

JOSEPH ZAHRA JOE ZAHRA was born in Mdina, Malta, on 8 September, 1938. In 1962 he met Mary (nee Xuereb, late) and they were married in Mdina on 29 April of the same year. He has two children, Charles and Marika, who is married with three children, Stephan, Anika and Eliza. Being from a large family after the Second World War where life was hard, Joe had to work before finishing school at the age of 14 to help his family. In Malta he worked with building contractors and was a master a few trades, mainly plumbing, electrical, and rendering, painting and decorating. As life was tough in Malta during the sixties and early seventies, Joe decided to follow his brother Paul to Australia in search of a better life for him and his young family. He departed from Malta on a Qantas flight and arrived in Australia on 21 September 1972. He started working as a machine operator with Commercial Minerals, and would go on to become a forklift driver and a storeman and packer. He worked for the same company for 31 years where he retired in 2003. Joe’s interest in music and bands came naturally through his youth as his father used to play the clarinet and his brother the trumpet with L’Isle

Adam and St Joseph band clubs in Rabat, Malta. Another brother of his also used to play the guitar and the mouth organ with a group. His interest continued when he arrived in Australia. When he heard about our band he started following it and, in 1982, he became and Associate Member. He developed a close relationship with (the late) Maestro Joe Darmanin and has been working and helping behind the scenes ever since. His daughter Marika followed her father’s interest in music and as a seven-year-old she began her studies. At that young age, with her small hands and fingers, she had some problems playing the clarinet – so much so that Mro Darmanin had to make some alterations to the instrument. At about 11 she became a member of the band and she was a very keen and active member. Mro Darmanin placed her in the role of first clarinet and she was a member of the committee for a couple of years. In the meantime Marika met Mrs Douglas – a very good piano player – who, finding out about Marika’s talents, created a small ensemble together with some other young musicians. For quite a while, they would put on shows at the Opera House every Saturday. >>


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



>> from Page 4

As everyone can see, this quiet achiever carried his family’s cultural traditions with him here to Australia. His involvement in the band instils in him a sense of pride that he is helping keep alive this great tradition of ours. He enjoys the social aspects of the band and looks forward to Monday nights. He’s there early with a couple of his mates to prepare the chairs and distribute the music books to the band members, as well as catching up with his long-time friends for a yarn and a cup of tea while they listen to the band practicing some marches.

On Festa Sundays Joseph proudly puts on his uniform and looks forward to marching with the band. Anzac Day is another special day on the band calendar where Joseph marches with pride under the Australian and Maltese flags knowing that the band is being put on show across Australia. I have to say without hesitation that Joe is a real quiet achiever, working continuously behind the scenes with that natural smile of his. He’s a clear example for all who have voluntary work in their heart and it’s a pity that nowadays gentlemen like him are really hard to find.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14


RENO (ZAREN) GALEA Reno Galea was born in Mosta, Malta, on the 9 November, 1935. As other kids he attended Mosta Primary school and he only worked for a few months in Malta. He migrated to Australia at a tender age of 19, boarding the SS Sorriento on 8 October, 1954 and arrived in Sydney three months later. In 1956 he met Maria (nee Zerafa) from Għajnsielem, Gozo, whom he married on the 30 October 1956 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish in Wentworthville. Reno and Mary have a daughter, Marisa, and a son, Mikael, and they also have four grandchildren: Emily, Loren, Michelle and Natasha. Reno’s first job was as a storeman and packer with Sterling Henry in Flemington, where he stayed for a few years. He then had several different jobs before settling at the Cordina Chickens factory where he worked for nearly 11 years. Reno’s interest in the band came in Malta where he used to go to Mosta’s

Nicolò Isouard band club. At least once a week he would attend their band rehearsals and used to follow the band in the festi. Here in Australia, Reno would go along to the festi organised by the Maltese community but it was only in 1980 that he joined our band, when George Attard – an already established trumpeter with the Band – started to work in the same factory. They became good friends and it was through this friendship that George encouraged Reno to become an Associate Member of the band . From then on Reno became really involved in the band and he was a member of the committee under several presidents like Eric Rizzo, Oreste Aquilina, George Attard, Charlie Zammit and Tony Vella. He was one of the organisers – together with George Attard and Moses Mifsud – of the band’s first trip to Melbourne for the St. Helena Festa and later again with another trip to Melbourne for the feast of San Gejtanu, followed by many more. Reno was one of the organisers for the band’s 20th and the 30th anniversaries which were held in Blacktown. When the band was based in Greystanes parish, where it held its rehearsals, Reno was the caretaker who would punctually open the hall and together with his mate Joe Zahra, help to prepare the room and distribute the music books. Reno is another silent achiever that


over the last 30 years has dedicated himself to this great Maltese tradition – Il-Banda – where he’s happy for Monday rehearsals to come around so that he can help out, listen to some marches and catch up with his old pals over a cuppa. You’ll also see Reno proudly wearing the band uniform when the band is performing at a festa, always around to give a helping hand. When I look at people like Reno and a few others that we have around the band and see their dedication and work behind the scenes – without putting up any fuss – I say we’re lucky, because without their sacrifices, together with the bandsmen, the band just wouldn’t have made it through all these years.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14









Not only the "Fountain of Love", Fontana Amorosa is a wellspring of excellence with over twenty years in committed service to couples and their guests. This elegant venue offers impeccably trained staff and experienced event co-ordinators who will manage your day with style and finesse. Seating up to 400, guests will be delighted with the large dance floor and rich Mediterranean influenced menu. Fontana Amorosa knows flexibility is the key, so whether you plan an intimate affair or grand gala, they will create a memorable event. Phone Marios Pericleous to book your special occasion now.

29 Forbes Street, Liverpool Ph 9601 6860, Fax 9601 6862 Mobile 0414395468 Email Website


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



La Valette Social Centre 175 Walters Rd, Blacktown 2148 - - 9622 5847

La Valette Social Centre was established in 1964 with Fr Paul Baron OFM being its founder. Its conception was in a shed in Doonside where a small group of Maltese, together with Fr Paul, met to socialise. As time went on the need for a Maltese Chaplaincy was felt and in 1978 a block of land on Walters Road in Blacktown was bought where the chapel, named after St Francis of Assisi, was built. As the Maltese community of Blacktown and the surrounding area kept growing, there was a need for a bigger meeting place and in 1986 the La Valette Social Centre was built at the back of the Chapel. The Centre has grown under the leadership of Gejtu Pace and his committee and has 550 members. Nowadays the Centre offers a Respite Service which includes outings and visits to the doctor for those who live on their own. The Centre also offers Day Care Respite every Thursday for those who live with carers or on their own where they are picked up and brought to the Centre, have Mass celebrated for them in Maltese, have lunch and play Bingo and later are dropped off home. The Centre also opens socially

every Saturday from 5.00pm onwards. These evenings present a night of entertainment for the Maltese community. Maltese food is prepared and this is followed by a disco and Għana once a month. Bingo and boċċi are also great attractions of the Saturday evenings. The Centre hires its hall for Maltese functions and even functions organised by different nationalities. Every so often, various Maltese festa committees celebrate the feast of their patron saint at the Centre and their turn out is always a great success. The Chapel offers two Masses in Maltese every Saturday evening one at 4.45pm and one at 6.15pm and a 7.00am Mass on Sunday morning. In 2004 the Centre brought Fr Paul Baron from Malta to celebrate the 40th anniversary since the first group of Maltese gathered together. For this occasion a monument was unveiled at the Centre. It carries the names of those who gave their time and talents for the Maltese community. The vision of the Centre is that it keeps growing to cater for the needs of the Maltese community.

For membership, hall hire or any other enquiries call the Centre on 9622 5847. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



By Charles Cauchi

THE DOUBLE BELL EUPHONIUM The double bell euphonium ceased production around 1960. However, Our Lady Queen of Peace Maltese Band can boast that more than fifty years after the demise of its production, one such musical instrument is included in its vast ensemble. Thanks to Chris Borg, who personally flew to the United States to inspect, purchase and transport to NSW, the band now includes one of the few of such instruments which now possess a historical value in addition to their melodious tone. As a creation unique to the United States, the double-bell euphonium was first mass produced during the 1880s by CG Conn otherwise known as Conn Instruments. Sometimes dismissed as a novelty, the double bell euphonium features a second smaller bell to the main bell of the euphonium. Admittedly, the two bells cannot be utilised simultaneously (despite being

nicknamed ‘Stereo’ by our tuba player Joe Camilleri!). The smaller bell produces a more appropriate tone in the higher euphonium range. A musician could switch bells for certain passages or individual notes through operating an additional valve with his left hand, especially when emulating the sound of a trombone. Few professional musicians took up the double bell euphonium, but several well-known soloists did. Harry Whittier the euphonium virtuoso of the Patrick S. Gilmore band introduced the instrument in 1888. The March King, John Philip Sousa, introduced the instrument into his band the following year. Simone Mantia, a double-bell euphonium virtuoso with the Sousa and Pryor Bands, even composed ‘Priscilla’, a double-bell euphonium solo in tribute to Jane Priscilla Sousa. Other American bands followed the example ensuring peak production of the instrument from the 1890s into the 1920s. The instrument’s appearance then declined, but was still in common use right up to the 1960s. The instrument last featured in a Conn Instruments advertisement in the 1940s, but that was not the ultimate gong. During February 2013 an advertiser selling a ‘Double Bell Front’ on the net stated that the instrument was “Definitely used - dents, scratches, lyre screw missing, upper strap ring missing on back, 1st valve pull knob missing.” The double bell euphonium in use within our band is in tip-top condition.


Three of the band’s euphonium players (from left) Chris Borg, Orlando Vella and Tony Vassallo Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14


THE SOUSAPHONE Another American invented instrument forming part of our Maltese band is the Sousaphone, owned and played by Chris Grima, in a combination of a big man and a big musical instrument. Instrument maker JW Pepper invented and built the first the instrument in 1893 naming it Sousaphone in recognition of ideas and suggestions of the American composer John Philip Sousa. Designed like a big tuba that wraps round the “sousaphonist’s” body, the original Sousaphone had a directional bell made to point upwards for a concert setting and facing forward for the march. Conn Instruments produced the modern sousaphone preferred by The Sousa Band, with a forward facing flared bell in 1908, but other companies produced their own versions, some larger: Monster, Grand, Jumbo or Giant, depending on the brand. Most sousaphones are manufactured from sheet brass, much like many brass instruments. Uniquely the sousaphone can also be manufactured from fibreglass, for lower cost, greater durability, and significantly lighter weight. Sousaphones made in China and India are now gaining in popularity in the street band market. In Switzerland and Southern Germany, bands often use sousaphones to provide great dis-

play. The Yale Precision Marching Band (USA) has made a tradition of setting fire to the tops of the bells of their sousaphones, giving the impression of a musician breathing fire. Our sousaphonist Chris concentrates on producing great music through his highly visible instrument and nowadays taking along his Sousaphone whenever he visits Malta, he joins the Mellieħa “Victoria Band” in the local festivities, and in return he sometimes receives a march composition to be enjoyed by the followers of our Maltese band in NSW.


Specialists in Truck Body Building, Steel and Aluminium Tipping Trailers Phone 02 4648 2101 or visit

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14


MALTESE CHRISTMAS RECIPE ‘TORTA TAL-QASTAN’ - CHESTNUT TARTS 600gr fresh chestnuts 1 tbsp good marmalade Grated rind of 1 lemon and 1 orange 50gr bitter chocolate – melted Short crust pastry (made with 300gr flour) 2 – 3 tsp rum Beaten egg for glazing 1 tbsp sugar Peel the chestnuts and simmer until they are soft. Grind them in a food processor or pass through a food mill. Moisten, if necessary, with a little water, but the final puree should be dry. Add the other filling ingredients. Taste and adjust for sweetness. Leave to cool. Roll the pastry and line 12 greased tartlet tins. Fill with the chestnut mixture. Either lay a cross of two pastry strips, or cover each tartlet with a pastry lid, in which you cut a cross with scissors through which the filling will show. Glaze with a beaten egg. Bake at 200 degrees Celcius for 15 – 20 minutes.


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14


AVVENT  Frank Zammit - 15 December 1993

Milied! Ħabbâr is-sliem, nieqa ta’ l-imħabba, għoddok wasalt, u jien għadni nistenna ħjiel is-sħana ġewwinija li soltu tiġi żżurni qrib il-miġja tiegħek … Xejn s’issa – xejn! Il-ħsus ta’ qalbi donnhom kobba mħabbla. It-tama dgħajfa sikwit qajl tgħolli rasha fuq wiċċ baħar inkwiet biex ħesrem terġa’ tgħib taħt il-ħalel mgħaddba. Għalxejn jien, bħall-Għammiedi bil-għasluq f’idi nigref wiċċ kull skoll ħa nwitti t-triq għall-miġja tiegħek.

Wara kull ħotba titfaċċa muntanja ġdid, u jien, Ġesù Bambin, inħossni għaxi għall-mewt, ma niflaħx aktar! Imbagħad, xħin tasal ħdejja m’għadni xejn x’noffrilek ħlief l-għeja mnikkta ta’ moħħi u qalbi … Xħin inti tiġi, nitolbok tersaqli ftit fuq naħa waħda tal-maxtura mbierka u tħallini hemm fit-tiben artab li jsaħħanna, imħaxken miegħek taħt l-għajnejn maħbuba t’ommok u ommi, għall-għana ħelu ta’ l-anġli, biex imbagħad nagħlaq għajnejja fir-raqda ta’ dejjem.


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2013-14



Christmas and New Year Magazine 2013-14  

Our Lady Queen of Peace Maltese Band NSW Inc.

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you