THE SPORTS ISSUE Team spirit… in style CHALLENGING SPORTS FOR OUR SISTERS
PLAYING THE PART IN FANCY DRESS
The fun side of fashion From couturiers to sopranos Titanic talents past and future
FEATURES 10 InFocus changing the future Giving Senglea schoolchildren a chance 14 EyeWitness on your marks, sit down, work out Why get into wheelchair basketball? 18 LifeStyle to the finish line Women’s perseverence in sports
FASHION 30 ShowStopper poolside & playful Bright colours at night 39 FashionStory dressed the part The fantasy side of fashion
HEALTH 45 BeautyParlour born to be beautiful Getting make-up right 48 InThePink indelible ageing Effects of age on permanent cosmetic procedures 53 PinkShrink bullies are made not born Tackling the brutes head on
REGULARS 7 EditorsNote 8 MailShot 25 WomanKind fashion genius Gabrielle Chanel 44 ThinkPink health, beauty & fashion 52 ThinkPink food & things 57 GirlTalk me, jealous? The downward spiral of envy 63 WomenOnWheels love of your life Mini Cooper Convertible 64 StarGazer the future is pink Horoscopes 65 SnapShot hitting the right notes Nicola Said
COVER Photography Kurt Paris ∫ Styling Marisa Grima [www.marisagrima.com] ∫ Hair Christian @ Michael & Guy ∫ Make-up Elaine Galea ∫ Model Amy @ Supernova Model Management, wearing dress; necklace; bag; shoes, all Blue Shop.
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I don’t normally comment about politicians – at least not directly – and less so foreign ones, even though there would be much to say about many. But to think that a potential UK prime minister, Andrea Leadsom – she has since resigned, minutes before going to print – could utter such rubbish in an interview… And also because she is a woman and was talking about women matters, so to speak, I feel her ludicrous remarks about being better qualiﬁed to run the country than her opponent on the basis that she is a mother [cough, choke] could not be ignored in Pink. Yes, she suggested in an interview with the Times of London that her status as a mother gives her an advantage over her rival, Home Secretary Theresa May, who does not have children. And therefore, I suppose, in her view it stands to reason, she has no real, tangible interest in the future… And just for the record, this is not about mere political correctness. I’m completely averse to the notion. The problem, on the contrary, is that nobody does political incorrectness – and they always apologise and retract if they are made to feel they have.
That certain women have such a myopic view and feel they are superior to others because they are also “mothers” and not just mere mortal females, makes me almost dislike the word and not want to use it, or be associated with it. How detached from reality can they be and how clear it is that their only claim to fame is procreation and their oneup[wo]manship based on having babies – a card they can only use with those who don’t. It’s not the ﬁrst time I have seen this attitude expressed subtly by women who may not know they are secretly referred to as “smug mothers” and, probably unbeknown to them in their baby bubble, are the butt of many a joke by others in their so-called circle and not. Of course, I could never comment back then as I would have been completely misunderstood and branded a particular wine made of ‘sour grapes’. Now I can. And I feel even more strongly about it. And ﬁnally, I have a good reason to say it! Women… sometimes their own worst enemy. How pathetic to distinguish between themselves – on the absurd basis of having children, or not – and use it as a weapon too. My only problem here is that I cannot bring myself to defend the other camp. Because they simply need no defence. It would almost be a form of admission that they did if I stood up for them. It feels patronising and it’s the last thing I want. So let me just stick to pointing my accusing ﬁnger at those who feel they are ‘more complete’ women – cringe, cringe – because they’ve had children; and who use that term ‘childless’, which has always struck me as an incorrect word as opposed to ‘not having children’. It insinuates that someone is deprived of something and, in particular, that it was not a matter of choice and that nothing can be done about it. Wrong on so many counts. Back to Leadsom, I can say – after hearing the transcript of her interview and not falling
for a journalist’s spin and misinterpretation – that she was simply not ﬁt for purpose. While it would be cool to have a second Maggie Thatcher in the driving seat, I’d rather have yet another man than some embarrassment to the female race. Leadsom is representing the wrong kind of woman and she should stay at home and focus on bringing up her children – an experience that seems to have put her in the privileged position to understand the world better and be keener and more capable to make it a better place. I had plans to talk about a newfound feminism – something I’m almost ashamed of and would have had to go to great pains to explain. It was rightly pointed out to me by the man who would be bearing the brunt of it that it’s a form of feminism that is about anything but balance and equality. It’s about outright refusal to take on any of the roles that are traditionally associated with women… but not taking on any of those traditionally associated with men. It’s a best-of-both-worlds form of feminism that is probably destined to end in destruction. I ﬁnd my newfound feminism ironic. For the last decade, or so, I’ve insisted that though Pink is a women’s magazine, it is by no means feminist. We were born into a generation that seriously didn’t notice any differences between men and women. We didn’t have anything much to ﬁght for and so we avoided turning ourselves into victims – one of the major mistakes of some minority groups. And to be honest, a recent spate of campaigning for so-called “women’s rights” and shouting about so-called “women’s issues” has really put me off that line of thought again and moved me away from any feminist talk. Not everything is a “right”; and some things are simply non-issues and haven’t been for decades if you just worked your way around them. Having got a whiff of this feminist fuss, I’m sticking to my old mantra. If I’m going to ﬁght for something in 2016, it’s not going to be by burning my [Wonder]bra.
July 17, 2016 ∫ Pink is a monthly magazine ∫ Issue 141 ∫ Executive editor Fiona Galea Debono ∫ Publisher Allied Newspapers Ltd ∫ Printing Progress Press Ltd ∫ Production Allied Newspapers Ltd ∫ Contributors Kristina Chetcuti, Andrea Faye Christians, Edward Curmi, Claire Diacono, Mary Galea Debono, Christian Galea, Elaine Galea, Marisa Grima, Helen Raine, Virginia, Shelley Von Strunckel ∫ Design Manuel Schembri ∫ Photography Michael Falzon, Kurt Paris, Samuel Rondot, Chris Sant Fournier, Mark Zammit Cordina, Darrin Zammit Lupi ∫ Advertising sales Veronica Grech Sant [2559 4706; email@example.com].
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© 2016. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole, or in part, without written permission of the publishers, is prohibited.
Pink July 2016 ∫ 7
THE LETTER THAT TICKLED PINK EMPTYING THAT BIG ASHTRAY Dear Fiona, in August 2013, you wrote an editorial on emptying that big ashtray i.e. the problem of cigarette butts on Malta’s beaches. I replied with the suggestion that ashtrays should be provided at the entrance to beaches and to beach users, and was awarded the star letter prize. We had a brief e-mail correspondence afterwards in which I had wondered if it might be possible for your magazine to promote my idea. You explained why this would not be possible, but asked me to let you know if I was able to get anywhere with it myself. I decided [not with very much optimism, I must confess] to send a copy of my letter to the Malta Tourism Authority, asking them to consider my suggestions. Imagine my surprise when, just this evening, I came across a feature in the current issue of the Day by Day magazine [on tourists' and expats’ events] about enjoying Malta’s beaches, and read this: “Butts off campaign – New ashtray pots have been introduced in access points to beaches to encourage smokers to dispose of the cigarette ends before they enter the beach. Moreover, cone ashtrays are being distributed by beach supervisors on all MTAmanaged sandy beaches, while pocket ashtrays are being distributed on rocky beaches. Beach supervisors keep encouraging proper use of all beach assets ultimately for the beneﬁt of all beach users.” Hurrah! While I cannot claim that my letter was the trigger, or indeed, has any connection at all [as I never received a reply from the MTA], who knows whether or not you and I together may have started a train of thought that eventually led to this much-needed reform? If so, I think we should at least give each other a metaphorical pat on the back, don’t you? HEATHER BROWN, VIA E-MAIL
The writer of the letter of the month wins a Polo Ralph Lauren Supreme Leather eau de parfum natural spray, courtesy of Chemimart; a facial, courtesy of Chemimart; PLUS a selection of Deborah Milano make-up products from A.M.Mangion Ltd.
WRITE IN AND WIN We want to hear from you. Send us your feedback on Pink and any stories that may have touched you in some way, and you stand a chance of winning a Repetto Eau Florale eau de toilette, courtesy of Chemimart; a facial, courtesy of Chemimart; PLUS a selection of Deborah Milano make-up products from A.M.Mangion Ltd. Write to Pink, with your contact details, at Allied Newspapers Ltd, 341, Strickland House, St Paul Street, Valletta VLT 1211, or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org Correspondence may be edited for length and clarity. If prizes are not claimed within two months, they will no longer be available.
INTEGRITY – NOT A THING OF THE PAST After visiting your beautiful country in 2015, I couldn’t wait to return. Then, in March 2016, being made to retire, I took the chance to come back to Malta. While relaxing in the sunshine and enjoying reading Pink magazine, with its amazing images and fascinating articles, I was astonished to come across Do the Right Thing [PinkShrink, March 2016] by Dott. Edward Curmi. This clariﬁed so many ideas and answered questions that had plagued me throughout my working life and education. I was beginning to think that integrity was something that belonged to the past and perhaps religion, but nothing could be more relevant in the UK today. Every day, there seems to be another scandal, news of corruption, sexual abuse, tax avoidance, waste of precious resources, or just inequity. It was heartening to see the successful group action after the Hillsborough disaster, even though the corruption wasn’t uncovered for 27 years. But your article has also given me hope, a lot to think about, and as an individual, ways to put integrity into practice. MARGARITA CRUTCHLEY, LONDON
A MAGAZINE OF DIFFERENT THINGS Hi, I’m Emanuela and I’m 61 years old. I like to read Pink when I ﬁnd it in the newspapers. I love to read many things, but when it comes to Pink, I love PrivateEye and WomensWorld most, although I also enjoy the promotions of perfumes because I’m crazy about fragrances and I like to have different ones. Pink is a magazine of different things – that’s why I love to read it. Keep it up. EMANUELA GATT, FROM FGURA
INTRODUCING THE 19TH-CENTURY PHILANTHROPIST I always look forward to this magazine, with its interesting articles on various subjects, and make sure that it is included in my Sunday papers. I take an in-depth look at the adverts to see what is on the market and also to keep abreast with new shops and brands opening up. But what struck me most in the June issue is the write-up by Mary Galea Debono [WomanKind, Queen of the Poor], introducing the 19th-century philanthropist, Angela Burdett-Coutts. I had never heard of this person so I appreciated her good work, kindness and help to those in need all the more. Despite facing, at times, opposition to her good deeds, she excelled in educating the very poor. Her support to cancer research is notable; her direct contact with Charles Dickens, who together with her, helped prostitutes and built a home for a large number of young girls, was a tough decision. Although she had good relations with the Duke of Wellington, I admire her courage and determination to do what she thought best. Her success too in improving employees’ conditions was a very brave decision, which, in her days, was not easy, while her involvement in housing improved the lives of those who were less fortunate, allowing them to live in a decent home. She deserves that many streets in London are named after her. MARY MANGION, VIA E-MAIL
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Headmistress Rita Buhagiar
CHANGING THE FUTURE ANDREA FAYE CHRISTIANS watches on as primary school pupils benefit from after-school activities sponsored by the Spiro Mizzi Foundation.
E at S a te m so im sk fo
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Extracurricular classes at Senglea Primary School serve to provide a nutritious meal and teach cooking, table manners and correct social behaviour – important basic life skills that many take for granted.
ita Buhagiar has been headmistress of the Senglea Primary School, St Margaret College, for the last two years. She is passionate about her work and cares deeply for the pupils under her wing. She is doing her best to motivate them to enjoy coming to school, and even though they are still young, she is instilling in them the culture of moving on after secondary school and even taking up university courses. The thing is some of the students are bright, but unfortunately, a good number of them have low self-esteem and need constant pushing in order to advance. As one of the Three Cities, Senglea played an important role in Maltese history. Today, its 3,000 inhabitants remain proud of their heritage. However, they also have their fair share of problems; currently, Senglea has a high proportion of single mothers and families living in ﬁnancial diﬃculty. Education is the key, but recent studies have indicated a sharp decline in the number of students from the Three Cities graduating from the University of Malta, with only 140 out of 12,000 coming from these areas. It was as a result of these concerns that the Spiro Mizzi Foundation, a non-proﬁt organisation, was set up by Chev. Maurice Mizzi, the president of Mizzi Organisation, to support and honour the new generations coming from his late father Spiridione Mizzi’s hometown in Cottonera. The foundation’s aim is to help children in this area to beneﬁt from the same opportunities others may have in order to excel academically. Chev. Mizzi, together with Fr Hilary Tagliaferro, John Grech and a team of trustees, believe that it is an ongoing problem that needs to be tackled. Their mission is simple: “Give a man a ﬁsh, and you feed
him for a day; show him how to catch ﬁsh, and you feed him for a lifetime.” In 2010, the Sagra Familja Centre in Cospicua launched the Southern Comfort Project, ﬁnanced by the foundation. Here, special teachers are engaged to help the children with their homework and to see to their other academic needs. Classes are small and drama lessons are also held to help them express themselves. “I’d heard about the work going on at Cottonera, but discovered there was nothing of the sort in Senglea, so I contacted Dr Grech and asked if we could do something similar,” Ms Buhagiar says. “I was delighted when they also agreed to help out in Senglea. In fact, from 2015, the Spiro Mizzi Foundation started to support another 130 children.” The Senglea Primary School itself is large and historic, located within the bastions of Fort St Michael and built in the 1920s. The roof has stunning views of Grand Harbour – as does the new school library, a recently added attraction,
the headmistress comes across as approachable, with various children coming over to talk to her. “The government and private funding we receive is proportionate to the number of children. The school population is small, but the building is old and big with the result that maintenance expenses are high. It also needs to be modernised to keep in line with other schools and to cater for the students’ needs within the locality. Improvements would take a long time to materialise if we relied solely on government funding, so we try to ﬁnd alternative sources ourselves. This is where organisations like the Spiro Mizzi Foundation have been a great help,” Ms Buhagiar says. For the next scholastic year, a project focusing on adult learning is planned at the school. “If we can help the children and the parents at the same time, they stand a chance of having a better future. The ﬁrst part will focus on parents, working on the core subjects of English and basic numeracy, together with parenting skills, while the second will focus on employability skills,” she explains.
“IMPROVEMENTS WOULD TAKE A LONG TIME TO MATERIALISE IF WE RELIED SOLELY ON GOVERNMENT FUNDING, SO WE TRY TO FIND ALTERNATIVE SOURCES OURSELVES. THIS IS WHERE ORGANISATIONS LIKE THE SPIRO MIZZI FOUNDATION HAVE BEEN A GREAT HELP” which is acting as a stimulus for more regular visits. Students enjoy the spacious library for storytelling, shared and guided reading and to borrow books. Parents have also been given the opportunity to make use of this resource for the Id f ’Id reading course. Although refurbishment is needed in some areas, the rest of the school is cheerful, with walls adorned by paintings of cartoon characters and landscapes by MCAST students as well as the children’s own work. The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly. During a walk around the three-storey building,
As last year, the school will also be holding a number of after-school reading clubs aimed for children of various age groups. These sessions require the presence of parents and those who attend enjoy the animated sessions. However, a greater attendance would be preferred. Ms Buhagiar’s efforts are already showing results. “It is without a doubt the most demanding, but also the most rewarding, teaching job I have ever had. We try as much as possible to motivate the children and I often promise them end-of-term excursions if they reach certain targets. Pink July 2016 ∫ 11
INFOCUS “THESE AFTER-SCHOOL SPORTS ARE PROVIDING THE SPACE AND TIME FOR STUDENTS TO RELEASE ENERGY ACCUMULATED DURING THE DAY. UNFORTUNATELY, OPEN SPACE IS LIMITED BOTH AT HOME AND IN THE LOCALITY”
“Recently, we held Celebration Day and I asked one of the Year VI students what she wanted to be when she grew up. She told me she wanted to be an accountant. Another boy told me he wanted to be a priest, – which made me laugh as he is a very mischievous lad. But it goes to show that although young, children are starting to realise that there are choices and such things are possible. Ultimately, this is what it is all about. If we manage to change the future of just one child by giving them hope, then all this would have been worth it, wouldn’t it?”
Spiridione Mizzi’s legacy To make a change, the Spiro Mizzi Foundation believes there is a need to teach children what it means to really 12 ∫ Pink July 2016
work for it. The aim is to inspire and encourage the desire to want to learn and also to fulﬁl their full potential and reach goals that the older generations of their families did not. The foundation currently ﬁnances three extracurricular activities at the Senglea Primary School, aimed at building self-conﬁdence, basic life skills and social interaction. When one of the activities is under way, a delicious aroma ﬁlls the air from the cooking area and the children are clearly kept interested and motivated. Having helped prepare their meal, they are seated at table with illustrated table mats, reinforcing the correct use of cutlery and basic dining etiquette. They also help wash the dishes afterwards. The class serves the dual purpose of providing a nutritious meal along with teaching
them about cooking, table manners and correct social behaviour when at table – basic life skills that most of us take for granted. The other two activities are related to sports. The children, who are divided into two age groups and meet once a week, are lively and animated, playing ball games in the enclosed inner yard. Group games encourage team spirit and social interaction in a competitive environment of winning and losing, which, in turn, is character building. The sport master is patient, but assertive – again an important consideration as many of the children lack a father ﬁgure in their life. These after-school sports are proving to be popular, providing the space and time for students to release some of the energy accumulated during the day. Unfortunately, open space is limited both at home and in the locality. To make these activities varied and enjoyable, the foundation has also donated funds for the purchase of additional sports equipment.
ON YOUR MARKS, SIT DOWN, WORK OUT KRISTINA CHETCUTI tries her hand at wheelchair basketball to help break the taboo surrounding the sport.
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EYEWITNESS From left: Kristin Baldacchino, Sue Debattista and Bradley Zerafa show Kristina Chetcuti how to play the sport.
his is deﬁnitely the most challenging upper-body workout ever. And I am not at a fully-stocked super gym, nor am I heaving my pair of mismatched dumbbells. No. The credit goes to a sweaty, tough session of wheelchair basketball at Ta’ Qali. In 30 minutes, the intensive workout has boosted my back, arms and shoulders and I can feel my muscles being sculpted in manner of Lara Croft. When Sue Debattista, a wheelchair basketball player, invited Pink to try out the game, I thought: “Heh! Playing while sitting down can’t be all that difﬁcult.” Wrong. I did not reckon with the little matter of dribbling, passing and shooting while at the same time having to wheel yourself around the court. The end result was a lot of spinning on the spot and chasing of the ball. After ﬁve minutes, I was panting. By the 10th minute, I was exhausted and nowhere near making a decent pass, let alone netting the ball. “Don’t worry,” says Sue, 42, from Attard. “The ﬁrst time I played wheelchair basketball I ended up with blisters all over my hands and aches all over my body. You have to give it some time until the wheelchair becomes part of you and you don’t even think about it during the game.” Sue is, in fact, an ‘active’ player, the term used for the able-bodied. She joined the Malta Wheelchair Basketball last year. It was set up in 2014; today, they are a team of about 10 – a mix of players with disabilities and active ones. Pink is here because they would like to encourage more people to join the team to be able to organise a proper league. “It would be great if you could tell everyone what a good workout it is. People tend to see the word ‘wheelchair’ and zone out. But, in fact, it’s brilliant exercise for everyone,” says Sue. A mother of two sons, she used to play basketball when she was younger, but after a miscarriage, she decided to stop before her next pregnancy. However, she claims, she always felt the need to be part of a team. “I never had the opportunity as I felt too busy to be committed to a
“I PLAYED BASKETBALL WHEN I COULD STILL WALK, SO THE FACT THAT I CAN PLAY IT EVEN NOW THAT I AM IN A WHEELCHAIR IS GREAT” team. Thirteen years later, I came across the words ‘wheelchair basketball’ and decided to check out Facebook. I watched a video on how to play it and it struck me. I immediately thought this was for me and I never looked at it as a sport for ‘the disabled’ – a common misconception out there. People think of it as charity – please don’t. It’s a workout.
“I decided to give it a go, and I must say, I really had a good time! Now, a year has passed, and even though we only meet once a week on Sundays, I always try my best to join for a great session.” The youngest in the team is Bradley Zerafa, 12, from Fgura, who suffers from spina biﬁda and has been restricted to wheelchair use. He wants to tell me how much he loves the Pink July 2016 ∫ 15
EYEWITNESS game, but at the same time, he’s ﬁdgety: the longer he talks to me, the less time he’ll have zooming about, ball in hand, on court. “I played basketball when I could still walk, so the fact that I can play it even now that I am in a wheelchair is great,” he says. Then he adds as an afterthought: “Actually it’s more fun!” Wheelchair basketball is played in a regular-sized court, with ﬁve people against another ﬁve; the height of the rings is exactly the same as in active basketball. The skills are also exactly the same: dribbling, passing, shooting. “It’s a very fast game, especially when two teams are playing against each other,” the team’s coach Kristin Baldacchino, says. Kristin, who is an occupational therapist by profession, also stresses how this is a sport for everybody: “Players of basketball, skilled ones, people who have never played basket in their lives, active people and people with any kind of disability.” The wheelchairs are specially designed for stability: the seats are lower and the wheels are positioned further apart than those of regular ones and are inclined at an angle. They are lighter, more durable and agile, as well as being slightly different according to each player’s position on the court. Wheelchair control is the challenging part. When you’re about to shoot, you can’t just focus on the hoop; you have to remember to stop the chair. The rules are the same as stand-up basketball, but you have to make triple the effort, which is what makes it an extensive upper-body workout. World championships for the sport, which was founded by US veteran soldiers, have been held since 1973. However, it was only set up in Malta two years ago when then MEP candidate, Jonathan Shaw, played his ﬁrst game of wheelchair basketball with fellow MEP candidates and kept toppling over because it was played on regular wheelchairs. By the time he got the hang of it, he declared it “one of the toughest sports I ever played”. Jonathan took it upon himself to support the cause and make wheelchair basketball an regular sport. He fundraised for the purchasing of 10 basketball wheelchairs, and the Malta Wheelchair Basketball was set up. Last year, a 24-year-old university student, Kelly Busuttil, launched a social 16 ∫ Pink July 2016
media video to promote wheelchair basketball as a sport in its own right. She said that anyone can play wheelchair basketball and the more the players, the more the competitions that could be held. In fact, in countries such as Canada, Australia and England, nondisabled athletes using wheelchairs are allowed to compete alongside other athletes on mixed teams.
WHEELCHAIR BASKETBALL RULES It has the same rules and scoring of basketball, with the same 10-foot basketball hoop and standard basketball court. The exceptions are rules that have been adapted for the wheelchair, such as ‘travelling’ – in wheelchair basketball, it is when the athletes touch the wheels of their chair more than twice after receiving or dribbling the ball. The individual must pass, bounce, or shoot the ball before touching the wheels again.
John Xuereb, 29, a clerk from San Gwann, also wheelchair-bound due to spina biﬁda, has been playing since its inception in Malta. “It is an ability challenge. When I’m on the court, I don’t see a thing except the ball. I forget everything,” he says. The others tease him that he is the most competitive and would stop at nothing to get the ball. He acknowledges it with a grin. Then he targets his appeal at parents. “The problem is that parents of children with disability are scared that they
will get hurt. It’s a mentality we need to change. If Sue falls off the wheelchair, barely anyone notices. If I fall off, it’s the end of the world. Why? At most, I’d break my leg, like she could break hers, but just because I’m wheelchair-bound, everyone makes more fuss.” It’s a taboo that needs to be stamped out, he says. People undergoing physiotherapy, for example, are reluctant to
During one of the Sunday sessions…
practise wheelchair basketball because they would be afraid of the stigma. “Maybe this is why we need to go to schools – so for children, the wheelchair would no longer be a taboo,” he says. The coach and the players are very eager to extend their sport to corporate and team-building activities to create more awareness. At the moment, their only slot to play wheelchair basketball is 90 minutes on Sunday afternoons in winter and mornings in summer. They are hoping that if more people joined and committed themselves to the sport, they’d have another practice slot during the week. If they manage to ﬁnd a sponsor, they hope to be able to give their 10 wheelchairs some much needed maintenance, and maybe even be able to get more – a minimum of 20 are required to introduce a league. “Mostly, we want to tell people to join us because it keeps you in great shape and it is good fun,” Sue reiterates. For more information, check out the Facebook page Malta Wheelchair Basketball, or call on 7939 2139.
LIFESTYLE Isabelle Caruana during a 12km climb of the Alps on day two of the RE/MAX Alive cycling challenge. Photography Michael Falzon
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To the FINISH LINE They’ve been training hard in their own sports to achieve their aims. At 14, Emilie Gregory is determined to do her best to represent Malta in sailing at the world championships; and Isabelle Caruana, 41, is raising funds for cancer research through her cycling challenge. Here’s how they’ve geared up to get to their goals.
sabelle Caruana is one of 29 cyclists taking part in the RE/MAX Alive 2016 cycling challenge in aid of children’s cancer research. Even after the cycle from Zagreb in Croatia, through Slovenia, down to the Vatican, stretching 1,100km, is over, she will continue in her fundraising mission. Her real ﬁnish line is next November. At what stage did you decide that cycling was the sport for you and that you wanted to push your limits to use it to raise funds for charity? I started cycling around three years ago when I happened to ‘like’ a Facebook photograph of a friend of mine and a cyclist approached me to join the South Cranx group, which is open to practically everyone who cycles. My two boys were still young, so I always put aside the idea of doing any challenge. Every year, the chairperson of Alive would ask me to join the team, and this year, I decided to take the plunge. I took the decision during the South Cranx Christmas party. On a scale of one to 10, how much time do you dedicate to it, and how did that change in the run-up to the 1,100km cycle? Before I started the challenge, rides were as little as four hours per week, normally on a Saturday afternoon, or a Sunday morning. The schedule changed drastically in the past months when a
lot of time was initially dedicated to fundraising activities, and lately, to training. We reached a peak of around 24 hours per week in the last month. Are there ever times when you absolutely don’t feel like cycling and, if so, how do you get yourself on that bike and out on the road? Somehow, I got hooked. I don’t ever remember a time when I didn’t feel like cycling. This year, we were blessed with good weather, making it even more enjoyable. Having said that, the only thing that worried me was the long hours away from home. Both my boys were doing their end-of-year exams during the peak weeks of training. My husband helped them out with all their studies. The challenge calls for long hours of training away from the family. So their understanding is of utmost importance.
of us decided to ﬁnish the route. I can’t say I was scared, but I still remember the numb ﬁngers, the shivering, the drenched clothes and the low visibility. I’m sure many thought we were out of our minds. That’s when perseverance outweighs fear. You are part of a 29-strong team of people from all walks of life. What are the dymanics between you? And what, if any, are the differences between you and the boys in terms of both approach to the sport and actual physical skills? Yes, we come from all walks of life, but I believe people can socialise comfortably together irrespective of their differences. Some are bubbly, some more serious, but all are committed to the challenge, with one main goal in mind. I can honestly say I wear my Alive Tshirt with honour. Of course, the boys
“I CAN’T SAY I WAS SCARED, BUT I STILL REMEMBER THE NUMB FINGERS, THE SHIVERING, THE DRENCHED CLOTHES AND THE LOW VISIBILITY. I’M SURE MANY THOUGHT WE WERE OUT OF OUR MINDS. THAT’S WHEN PERSEVERANCE OUTWEIGHS FEAR” What are the worst conditions you have ever cycled in and have you ever been scared? In February 2014, a group of around 25 cyclists decided to cycle 100km around Malta. It was a cold day, and halfway through, it started raining heavily. Five
are physically stronger. It’s genetically inbuilt in them. But the highendurance training brought me quite close to their level and we cycle very comfortably together. I can proudly admit that if not up to their level, we are very close. Pink July 2016 ∫ 19
LIFESTYLE Isabelle and her ‘family’ of four teammates, who trained together and support each other.
How important is team spirit and what do you do to keep it going strong? We joke along the way; we talk about personal things; sometimes, there are arguments; but all in all, there is a positive vibe. Like in every other group, you get more attached to the people you ﬁt in with – the comfortable circle within the larger one. I teamed up with four boys and we are family. Alive 2016 brought us together as I had never met them before. We did all the training together and we supported each other when times got tough. I found a lot of support to persevere in training and I owe to them where I am now. The challenge is a mental game. If you set your mind to it, you will manage. But you need the support of the people close to you. After a tough Sunday group training, we were discussing how diﬃcult and time-consuming the challenge is. We decided to keep the children suffering from cancer in mind every time that tiredness set in. It was quite a long conversation, sometime back in April, and I remember vowing to honour it. All ﬁve of us agreed and we never looked back. It’s one warm feeling I will carry in my heart as a memory of Alive 2016. Team spirit is vital. Finishing the challenge is important, but ﬁnishing it with the team would mean ﬁnishing it in style. There is something in the Alive group that makes every member feel welcome and an important asset for the team. In what area do you feel you need to make the most effort to be disciplined in this sport? I have to get used to the rough and off-road terrain as I’m more comfortable on the road. What’s the feeling of being out on two wheels on the road? It’s a feeling of freedom; a feeling of contact with nature; the same feeling a dog 20 ∫ Pink July 2016
with ﬂoppy ears gets when he puts his head out of the car window.
If you had to promote cycling to other women, what would you say? Don’t hesitate. Go for it! It’s a sport suitable for both sexes. Follow the Highway Code, respect the car drivers and they will respect you back. Accidents do happen, but with a little bit of caution, most can be avoided. Smile at the car drivers and signal a thank you to anyone who gives way to you. Raise awareness with the people you know to make them respect people on two wheels. We are cyclists, but we have our families waiting for us to get back home. How driven and motivated are you by the fundraising aspect of this cycle? Very motivated! The amount collected is never enough; every cent counts. I asked for donations from many people I knew. I organised fundraising events. I take this opportunity to thank all my sponsors and all those who donated towards this good cause. Our aim is to reach €100,000. To help us reach our goal, donations can be made on these SMS numbers: 50617364 for €2.33; 50618081 for €4.66; 50618913 for €6.99; and 50619208 for €11.65. And what do you feel about the cause? The efforts are justiﬁed. If we can save just one life, it’s already enough. You would have already completed the challenge by this time, but what were you most worried about and how do you overcome any fears? There is always a slight fear that something may crop up at the very end. An injury at this point in time would see any cyclist out of the challenge. What is the most challenging aspect of what you are doing from both a physical and a mental point of view? The perseverance when tiredness sets in is physically very challenging. Mentally, it’s just as challenging. It’s easy to get disheartened. Focusing on the goal is important, and keeping in mind that every effort is for a good cause makes it something to be proud of.
milie Gregory, 14, is representing Malta at the International RS Feva Association World Championships 2016 in Spain this month, together with another ﬁve young sailors. She has been attending the Royal Malta Yacht Club Sailing School for a year now, but sailing since she was eight. Out at sea is exactly where she wants to be: free and in control. At what stage did you decide that sailing was the sport for you and that you wanted to take it to international competition level? I started sailing at the age of eight, but my enthusiasm increased when we were offered the opportunity to participate in the World Championships. On a scale of one to 10, how much time do you dedicate to it, and how is that changing in the run-up to the competition? I would say I dedicate eight out of 10 of my time to sailing, especially in the run-up to the competition, with training ﬁve times a week all day. Are there ever times when you abosolutely don’t feel like sailing and, if so, how do you get yourself on that boat and out at sea? Although sailing involves a lot of energy, and sometimes, I do admit I just don’t feel like it, as soon as I get out on the water, my attitude changes completely. What are the worst conditions you have ever sailed in and have you ever been scared? The worst conditions I’ve ever experienced were when, unexpectedly, we were hit by a horrible storm while we were sailing down from Gozo back to the club at the end of summer. The visibility dropped, and lightning, rain and hail all hit at once. Eventually, we had to go aboard a ﬁshing boat, which took us to shore. Of course, sometimes, I do get scared, but each experience is also always exciting and fun to look back on.
LIFESTYLE You are part of a six-strong team – and one of only two girls. What are the dymanics between you? And what, if any, are the differences between you and the boys in terms of both approach to the sport and actual physical skills? I think of my teammates as my family. Despite the gender difference, the approach to the sport is very similar, with a lot of determination. The only difference is that the males usually have more physical strength than the females. Do you feel there are enough female sailors out there, and if not, why doesn’t the sport appeal to women? There is a larger amount of male sailors, and this may be because it is very challenging and physically demanding and it takes you out of your comfort zone, especially in winter. Having said that, I feel that, recently, females are becoming more interested in the sport. How important is team spirit and what do you do to keep it going strong? I ﬁnd that team spirit is very important, especially when it comes to a sport like
“BEING POWERED BY WIND AND WAVES GIVES ME A GREAT SENSATION OF FREEDOM, WHERE I AM ALSO IN TOTAL CONTROL” sailing. As a team, we have not only become friends at sea, but also socially. We encourage each other to keep the momentum going to be properly prepared and achieve a result. In what area do you feel you need to make the most effort to be disciplined in this sport? A lot of patience and time is required in sailing, so it is important to be dedicated. What’s the feeling of being out at sea? It’s amazing; it’s exactly where I want to be. Being powered by wind and waves gives me a great sensation of freedom, where I am also in total control. If you had to promote sailing to other youths, what would you say? Sailing is a fun, energetic and sociable sport. Apart from being a super sport, Malta is the ideal place for it. 22 ∫ Pink July 2016
Do you feel the Maltese stand a good chance in Santander and do you dream of winning? Maltese sailors often do well in international competitions. I feel my team has a very good chance of doing well, despite the large amount of participants. Do you feel you have access to many competition opportunities out there? Do you have, or need, more support? Nearly all the important competitions are overseas and are very costly for obvious reasons, so I feel we are limited as to the amount we can participate in. What is the most challenging aspect of what you are doing from both a physical and a mental point of view? Come rain or shine, you need to be mentally prepared to just get out there. Physically, the most challenging aspect is having the strength and stamina to keep going.
Emilie with her ‘family’ of teammates, [from top left] Harry Parnis England, Kane Seychell, Nick Bonello Ghio, Alexander Bartoli and Megan Ferry, who are now not only friends at sea, but also socially.
LIFESTYLE Emilie Gregory [front] and teammate Megan Ferry.
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genıus MARY GALEA DEBONO steps into Gabrielle Chanel’s shoes to chronicle her life and times. Her story is not just a narrative of successes. Her troubled childhood, without which she would never have been the woman she turned out to be, is in itself worth exploring.
ike art, literature, architecture and music, fashion can be both a reﬂection of the spirit of an epoch, as well as a vehicle for change. Fashion being more ephemeral, it is, by its very nature, a medium that makes it diﬃcult to combine these two qualities and achieve both aims. To succeed in doing so requires a genius. Gabrielle Chanel was that genius. Because she had an instinct for intuiting the signs of her time, Chanel recognised the need for innovative changes in the way the ‘New Woman’ dressed, and in the process of creating something for her that reﬂected her needs, she paved the way for her emancipation and made a positive contribution to her struggle for equality. It is in recognition of this achievement that she found herself in Time magazine’s list of the 100 most inﬂuential people of the 20th century in the company of, among others, Albert Einstein, Pope John Paul II and Mahatma Gandhi. So why was she the only couturier included in this list? As Lisa Chaney says in her excellent biography of the designer, Chanel managed, through her creations, to change the concept of elegance. Before she came on the scene, women wore costumes rather than clothes. A woman’s dress was judged ﬁrstly for its elaborate
adornment, which was considered synonymous with elegance, and secondly, for its costly materials – a good dress was made of silk, satin, or lace, all other fabrics being too humble. Chanel changed all this; she introduced simplicity and minimalism and substituted ﬂamboyance with sobriety. Understatement became chic. She looked around her, observed and realised that the role of women was changing and bound to go on changing. The modern woman was more independent; more in control of her life. She was no longer just a spectator; she played tennis and golf and went to the
fussy styles were no longer appropriate. Sober and practical clothes were more in keeping at a time when women were expected – and were eager – to contribute to the war effort. There was also the problem of lack of materials. Faced with a shortage of rich fabrics, Chanel
“CHANEL CHANGED ALL THIS; SHE INTRODUCED SIMPLICITY AND MINIMALISM AND SUBSTITUTED FLAMBOYANCE WITH SOBRIETY. UNDERSTATEMENT BECAME CHIC” beach. She needed practical, sporty clothes that allowed her movement. Corsets that reduced a woman’s ﬁgure to an hour-glass shape were no longer adequate for her lifestyle; dresses had to follow the lines of the ﬁgure. The hemline had to be lifted. Chanel’s innovations must also be seen in the context of the political situation in Europe at the time. In the summer of 1913, when she was preparing to open her ﬁrst shop in the smartest street of Deauville, war was looming on the horizon. Conspicuous luxury and
had to resort to knitted wool jersey, which, up till then, had not even been considered ﬁt for underwear. World War I, with its brutalities and the growing awareness of the futility of sacriﬁcing European manhood to misguided ideals and misplaced heroism, left a radically changed Europe where romanticism no longer had a place. Women understood this; they were enthusiastic to adapt to the new order and adopt her style. When the war was over, Chanel launched the ﬁrst maison de couture Pink July 2016 ∫ 25
WOMANKIND in Biarritz, another favourite resort among socialites, to be followed later on by one in Paris. In her new collections, which she exhibited biannually and which became very popular, she gave proof of how innovative she was. She had a different approach to the way she introduced her styles. She was the ﬁrst couturier to have her models exhibiting her creations in a ﬂoor show. She gave her models – well-bred girls such as Marie-Hélène de Rothschild – an entire wardrobe that they wore everywhere, thus introducing the concept of promotion and marketing. Her emphasis on simplicity and practicality meant that her clothes – her raincoats and trousers ﬁt for day and evening wear; her ‘little black dress’ – could be worn by anyone. This revolutionised fashion by moving it from the salons to the street, making way for the birth of the new concept: the prét-â-porter. Fashion became more democratic. She was the ﬁrst to create a perfume to go with her clothes. Chanel N°5, in the iconic art deco bottle, remains, to this day, synonymous with luxury. She also
that her personal fortune was $1.5 billion. Although wealth can never be equated with achievement and still less with greatness, it has to be admitted that her entrepreneurship was exceptional. Many criticised her for being abrasive and too outspoken; that she had a malicious tongue. There is no doubt, however, that she was outstandingly intelligent and, as Vogue magazine put it, “completely self-believing”. Chanel’s life story is not just a narrative of successes. Her troubled childhood, without which she would never have been the woman she turned out to be, is in itself a story worth exploring. Her father, Albert, was an itinerant pedlar from a remote village in the Cévennes. When he found out that the 16-year-old girl he had seduced was pregnant, he packed up his bags and left. It was only after his whereabouts were found that he reluctantly returned. When his second daughter, Gabrielle, was born in 1883, in the charity hospital run by the Sisters of Providence, he was once more an absent father, although shortly afterwards, he again made an appearance
“REPRESSION AND NEGLECT LEFT THEIR MARK ON THE GIRLS. THE ELDER SISTER LATER COMMITTED SUICIDE, BUT GABRIELLE WAS MORE RESILIENT” introduced costume jewellery, which, contrary to her clothes, was conspicuously fake. All this she marketed under her logo, the intertwined CC, her nickname being Coco. In keeping with this new look, she introduced the short bobbed hairstyle. Her avant-garde ideas made her a force in the art scene, and through her, the two worlds of art and fashion moved closer. She was accepted among the upper Bohemia and artists like Georges Braque and Picasso; ﬁlm-makers like Jean Cocteau; choreographers like Sergei Diaghilev and the members of the Ballets Russes; and intellectuals like André Malraux were among her friends. “Gabrielle’s personal involvement in the great cultural shifts taking place… made her a most interesting woman,” says her biographer. When she died in 1971, it was estimated that the annual turnover of the House of Chanel was $160 million and 26 ∫ Pink July 2016
and married the mother. Three other children were born, but the mother, constantly neglected, unable to sustain the emotional and physical stress, succumbed to ill health and died at the age of 31. One day, the irresponsible Albert, who after the death of his wife, had remained, for years, an absent presence, reappeared on the scene and, separating the sons from the daughters, he placed the latter in an orphanage in Aubazine. He had no intention of ever seeing them again. Repression and neglect left their mark on the girls. The elder sister later committed suicide, but Gabrielle was more resilient. When the Chanel girls grew up, the nuns, feeling responsible for them, transferred them to another convent in Moulins, a garrison town in central
France. There Gabrielle met her aunt, who was only a couple of years older than her. The two got on very well together and both decided to leave the convent to start working as seamstresses. They frequented cafe-concerts, then popular places of entertainment, and they soon became the favourites of the eligible oﬃcers. After a while, Chanel moved from Moulins to Vichy, a fashionable spa, and there she met Etienne Balsan, who took her with him to his chateau in Royallieu. Although it is possible that while she was in Moulins she may have indulged in a mild form of prostitution, Balsan was her ﬁrst real lover in a list of high-proﬁle lovers, who included famous names such as the composer Igor Stravinsky, the ﬁlm director Luchino Visconti, the artist Salvador Dali, and other highly eligible aristocrats such as the Duke of Westminster, and Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich, grandson to Tsar Alexander II.
WOMANKIND The story of Chanel’s love affairs says a lot about the woman. Illegitimacy, abandonment by the father and the family, and a childhood spent in an orphanage were all slurs on her reputation. Self-conscious about her background, she never discussed it with anyone. It is this, more than anything else, which strengthened her determination to forge a career that would make her completely independent. At Royallieu, she had had the opportunity to observe the ways of those who were socially superior and she was intelligent enough to absorb the conventions. But for many years, in spite of her status as a couturier, for her social betters, she remained a mere dressmaker. Her affairs with important and aristocratic men were her private revenge against those who had Coco Chanel and Arthur Capel earlier snubbed her.
“HER AFFAIRS WITH IMPORTANT AND ARISTOCRATIC MEN WERE HER PRIVATE REVENGE AGAINST THOSE WHO HAD EARLIER SNUBBED HER” Of all her lovers, it was Arthur Capel who had made her feel cherished and had acknowledged and encouraged her talents. When he left her to marry an English heiress, she was emotionally distraught. His marriage was not a success and he continued to ﬁnd excuses to see Chanel. In December of 1919, on his way to Cannes to spend Christmas with his sister, he crashed with his car and died on the spot. Chanel never got over the loss. Every time an affair came to an end, she went through the same feeling of neglect and desertion that she had experienced as a child when her father had abandoned her. Till the end of her life, she had a horror of loneliness, hated the approach of night, suffered from sleep walking and resorted to morphine although she remained in control of the drug. During World War II, when Paris was occupied by the Germans, Chanel had an affair with a German oﬃcer, Baron von Dincklage. She had sought his help to try and release her imprisoned nephew. But it was her instinct for survival and self-preservation, internalised in her childhood, that probably led her to enter into this relationship. Although many French women in the same predicament were prosecuted and imprisoned after the war, the same did not happen to Chanel. After the war, she went into voluntary exile in Switzerland. In 1954, she tried to relaunch herself, but was unsuccessful. She died in Paris in 1971. Fully aware that the French had never forgotten or forgiven her perceived betrayal in World War II, she gave instructions to be buried in Lausanne.
SHOWSTOPPER Trousers; scarf [worn as top], both Mango ∫ Ice-Watch, Ice-Watch Shop.
Poolside & playful THE HEIGHT OF FASHION IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT… Photography Kurt Paris Styling Marisa Grima [www.marisagrima.com] Hair Christian @ Michael & Guy Make-up Elaine Galea Model Amy @ Supernova Model Management
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SHOWSTOPPER Jumpsuit; shoes, both Miss Selfridge ∫ Ice-Watch, Ice-Watch Shop.
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SHOWSTOPPER Jacket; top; shorts; bag, all Tommy Hilﬁger ∫ sunglasses, from €80, Vogue @ Vision Opticians.
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SHOWSTOPPER Top; trousers, both M&Co ∫ shoes, Scholl Foothealth Centre ∫ Ice-Watch, Ice-Watch Shop.
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SHOWSTOPPER Bikini, Marks & Spencer.
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SHOWSTOPPER Dress, Oasis ∫ necklace, Mango.
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Bikini, Marks & Spencer ∫ sunglasses, from €120, Michael Kors @ Optika Opticians.
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Dressed THE PART Some people love fancy dress; others absolutely loathe it. At the Malta Concours d’Elegance, these ladies took the opportunity to complement classic cars with period costumes in the gardens of Villa Bologna. Some of them completely immersed themselves into the role, way beyond the mere costume, playing with the fun side of fashion and showcasing its history through the decades.
“COSTUMES ALLOW YOU TO DREAM YOU’RE SOMEONE ELSE, SOMEWHERE ELSE, IN A PERIOD OF YOUR CHOICE”
SYLVIE FREDRICK ADOPTS PRINCE GRACE OF MONACO STYLE AND BLENDS SEAMLESSLY INTO THE 1950S. Some people hate fancy dress; others grab any occasion. So what’s the fun in wearing a period costume? Sylvie Fredrick loves fancy dress in general: “Costumes allow you to dream you’re someone else, somewhere else, in a period of your choice. They give you an opportunity
to play a role and, therefore, you can say what you want, without being taken seriously… and get away with murder.” When it comes to fashion, she’s particularly fond of the Roaring Twenties, which she describes as “wildly comfortable, yet very sexy”. As for cars, those of the 1930s are just so beautiful and stately in her eyes. Even though she didn’t arrive in one for the Malta Concours d’Elegance garden
party at Villa Bologna, her favourite car that day just happened to match her dress to a T. “It was one of the winners – a beautiful Jag, 1952 E model, with a beige body and faded red leather seats; tremendously sleek and elegant. And my dress, a replica of the 1950s, with its swing skirt and old pink and faded red roses, was spot on.” Sylvie researched her look on the Internet. She didn’t want to spend a lot of money and was sure she would ﬁnd enough ‘stuff ’ in her wardrobe to put together an outﬁt that would ﬁt her favourite period. “But then, the day before, I took my daughter, who was one of the judges, shopping to Valletta. We happened on a vintage shop, and there, I found dresses to die for. So I ended up buying and wearing a piece from a totally different era. It was easy to ﬁnd the matching hat, shoes and handbag in my wardrobe. I just wish I had more time to ﬁnd gloves for the ﬁnishing touch.” The dress is a typical 1950s swing skirt, narrow waisted, silk and taffeta tailored affair. It has a pleated collar, which wraps low around the shoulders. The ﬂowered pattern is in beiges, pinks and faded reds. “A Princess Grace of Monaco dress, I can wear it again at a wedding for the church ceremony. As for the character, I could have been my mother meeting with a suitor for luncheon on the Champs Élysées in Paris on a warm April day. Or perhaps, I could have been Audrey Hepburn, climbing the Tour Eiffel side by side with Cary Grant in Charade…” Sylvie can’t say she wears things that are not of the moment. Though having said that, the fashion of today is often a repeat of the past, she adds. “So really, everyone, even if they are not aware of it, is wearing something from another decade. Look at lace today, or pencil trousers. This summer, the strong colours and dresses remind me of the 1960s.” Sylvie doesn’t mind second-hand clothes, provided they are in mint Pink July 2016 ∫ 39
FASHIONSTORY condition. She takes great care of her clothes and will never wear anything worn out. “I love fashion, vintage not excluded. But I don’t go out of my way to wear vintage.” So is she one to seek out, or organise, fancy dress parties, and is she always the one to go to town? Sylvie is guilty of both, her favourite being murder mystery dinners, where guests assume a role and must make an effort to dress up and play the part. She goes out of her way to appropriately decorate the venue too. Before the Concours d’Elegance, the last time she wore a costume was on New Year’s Eve, and before that, a year ago at her house. As for the importance of the period costume element to enhance the appeal of the event, Sylvie believes that making an effort to match the vintage cars, which are elegant, exclusive, personalised pieces of art, is an absolute must. “If guests don’t want to dress up in period costume, then they should at least dress up as if they are attending a grand affair. Glamour and glitter are a must. Whatever the case, it has to be an outﬁt that tries to tell a story when standing near a car that has its own story to tell.”
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GRETA CAMILLERI WEARS CONSERVATIVE CLOTHES AND HATES FANCY DRESS, BUT SHE FELT PART OF THE 1930S AND WAS HAPPY TO STEP INTO THE SHOES OF DOWNTON ABBEY’S LADY MARY CRAWLEY FOR THE ONE-OFF OCCASION. Like many others, Greta Camilleri hates fancy dress and has always refused to go to a costume party. However, this was different as the venue and the car made her feel part of the 1930s and really took her back in time. Gripped by the 1930s atmosphere, she even downloaded music from that era, which she played from the car she was complementing during the show. In fashion terms, Greta happens to feel most comfortable in the vintage look of the late 1920s and early 1930s, and for the Malta Concours d’Elegance, she was, therefore, in her element in a Austin 10/4 Clifton 1934 of which there are only about 43 surviving models. She researched the dress code, but with the help of the Internet, it wasn’t really a problem to nail the look. Greta wore a black ﬂapper dress, with a long string of pearls and had a long cigarette holder. “I think I was thinking of Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey of whom I am a great fan,” she says.
While she managed to immerse herself in the role for the occasion, in everyday life, there is deﬁnitely no theatrical element in her style, and she admits to buying very conservative clothes. “I am really not into vintage clothing and wouldn’t dream of wearing anything second hand.” Of course, it goes without saying that Greta is “deﬁnitely not” one to organise fancy dress parties and go to town. She categorically states that she has “never” attended one.
“I AM REALLY NOT INTO VINTAGE CLOTHING AND WOULDN’T DREAM OF WEARING ANYTHING SECOND HAND” But then, she does love classic cars, and she and her husband have bought a few, which they love to use. “The fact that these cars are so old – we have one that will be 90 next year – and still work perfectly makes me feel that I am preserving a part of history. And whenever we go out in one of them, we ﬁnd we put a smile on most people’s faces. It is possibly one of the few times people smile when driving on Malta’s busy roads.”
FASHIONSTORY STEPHANIE BEZZINA EMBRACED THE 1950S FOR THE LOVE OF HER VINTAGE CAR FROM THAT ERA. Stephanie Bezzina is not usually keen on wearing fancy dress. However, she was looking forward to this particular event because it helped her get a feel of the era. “Vintage cars have always been my passion and I wanted to look my best to complement the old English white Jaguar XK120 convertible from 1952.” Stephanie loves the fashion of the 1960s in particular because of “women’s liberation through mini skirts, daring hot pants and patterned dresses”. But she went for a 1950s look in this case in keeping with the car.
“ONCE SHE GOT INTO IT, SHE FULLY INMERSED HERSELF IN THE ROLE” CONNIE CAMILLERI WOULDN’T MISS A THEMED EVENT AND GRABBED THE OPPORTUNITY TO WEAR HER ORIGINAL FALDETTA FROM THE 1920S. When Connie Camilleri and her husband are invited to a period costume activity, such as a themed wedding, or a Halloween party, they make it a point not to miss it. Connie loves pre-war costumes in particular. In fact, for the Concours d’Elegance, she and her husband Joseph wore outﬁts that complemented their 1928 Marmon – a very rare vehicle, with only a few remaining, and the only one in Europe, as far as the Marmon Club of America is concerned. “To further add character to our costumes, I wore a faldetta, which was very popular during the pre-war and early post-war era. Mine is authentic as it was given to us by my husband’s grandmother,” Connie says, adding that the Marmon, complete with the faldetta costume, had won ﬁrst prize for the pre-war car of the Concours d’Elegance 2011. “Being the wife of a great car enthusiast and a restorer of vintage and classic cars, I cannot but show great interest and pride in our small collection of these and our old motorcycles.” Connie never turns down a costume party, or something that has to do with old cars like the Concours d’Elegance,
where the fancy dress element served to add even more appeal to the display of pre- and post-war classic cars. In fact, it was only last February that she wore a period costume at a carnival party. But that is where the fancy dress element stops. “It’s only when I’m invited to a special event like a themed wedding, or a carnival party, that I dress accordingly. Otherwise, I am very casual in my attire,” she says.
She can’t say she is into vintage clothing and never bought any second-hand clothes. So she searched online and looked through her wardrobe to see what would work, trying three dresses, but opting for the one she felt most comfortable in. “I dressed it up and accessorised it with jewellery I had at home and my friend lent me a spotted scarf to complete the look.” Stephanie doesn’t normally attend fancy dress parties, and the last time she dressed up was 10 years ago for a carnival Venetian ball at the Casino Maltese. But
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FASHIONSTORY she believes the period costume element was essential for the event and made it a unique occasion. Moreover, once she got into it, she fully immersed herself in the role. “My husband is a keen enthusiast of vintage cars and I grew to love them too. They are all convertible, given we are blessed with lovely weather all year round. He refers to them as his “old ladies”, but that obviously excludes me.”
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DORIS MALLIA SEWED HER OWN 1930S COSTUME TO BE SURE SHE WAS SPOT ON THE STYLE. Doris Mallia is one who likes to dress up – the last time she did so, she took on the role of Christine Daaé and accompanied the Phantom of the Opera interpreted by her husband. So when her cousin Joseph asked her to take part in the Malta Concours d’Elegance as his partner, instead of his wife, who couldn’t at that time, she was quite enthusiastic. Doris is particularly into the style of the 18th century, but for the garden party at Villa Bologna, her outﬁt had to portray the 1930s since she was in a 1930 Ford Model A. She did a lot of research on the Internet, reading up about 1930s styles from hair to hats, shoes, handbags and morning occasion dress styles. “When Joseph and I decided on the attire, we started shopping around. I must say that my husband helped me a lot as he drove me everywhere I wanted to go. But still, we couldn’t ﬁnd the exact look, so ﬁnally, I decided to sew it myself. “I based my look on a picture of an elegant lady from the 1930s that we found on the Internet. I wore a polka dot blue
straight dress down to my mid-calf, with ﬁve pleats at the centre of the waist, a wide blue sash around it, and a round collar with an opening at the front. My button-up white jacket with short puffed sleeves was left open to show the dress. My shoes and handbag were very similar to those of the era, while I converted two fascinators into one to complement my 1930s hairstyle done by my son. Finally, I wore a pearl necklace and earrings, which were given to me by Joseph’s wife.”
“WE COULDN’T FIND THE EXACT LOOK, SO FINALLY, I DECIDED TO SEW IT MYSELF” While she went to town on this occasion, there is no element of ‘fancy dress’ in Doris’s day-to-day attire and she wouldn’t really wear vintage. Although she does wear modern clothes, she likes a classical look best. Doris is not the type to organise fancy dress parties, although when she does something, she does it eagerly and eﬃciently. But for the Concours d’Elegance, she totally immersed herself in the role. Photography Samuel Rondot
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HEALH, BEAU & FASHION
LIKE A HAIRBRUSH A new home hair-straightening device, the only one that looks and works like a hairbrush, is safer to use than any other existing device, and a real time saver. Dafni acts as a hairbrush at a recommended temperature, giving quick results. It is suitable for all hair types and is safe for all ages. Dafni is ideal for those who have a full life, yet are fashion conscious and want to look and feel good. It is easy to use and helps achieve quick results in a very short time. The Hair Straightening Ceramic Brush enables you to achieve a beautiful, fashionable, sharp look in the time that suits your life’s pace. For further details, call on 2146 5893 and 9947 2152; or send an e-mail to email@example.com. www.dafnihair.com
INNOVATIVE COMPENSATING COMPLEX Menopause is a signiﬁcant stage in a woman’s life, which is why Vichy Laboratories created Neovadiol Compensating Complex, the cosmetic skincare product that helps compensate the impacts of menopause on the skin to restore both comfort and conﬁdence to women. Neovadiol Compensating Complex uses a unique complex of active ingredients, created to mimic the effects of Dehydroepiandrosterone [DHEA], a key hormone for youthful skin. The production of DHEA begins when we are children, and at around the age of 25, it peaks. By the time we are 70, only 10 per cent of this hormone’s maximum concentration remains. Thanks to Vichy’s innovative compensating complex, skin is transformed, regaining density, comfort and freshness. The complexion becomes more radiant and even, while skin looks fuller and plumper. For more information, send an e-mail to vichy@prohealth
BOTANIC CHIC From ﬂowery, long dresses, to the practical loose catsuit, summer fashion is all about looking effortlessly good. Irrespective of the mood you wake up in, summer wear is the image of happiness – light, free and made to enjoy the great outdoors. Combined with the right accessories – with the hat being an all-time classic, a necklace thrown in for that extra touch of glamour and the tote, which can take anything, from the oﬃce laptop to the beach towel for an early eve aperitif on the sand – Orsay fashion is a sure way to look the part from dawn to sunset. Orsay pieces are easy to put together and dress up or down according to the time of day – without the need to drain a credit card. Visit one of the Orsay outlets at The Point, Valletta and Birkirkara, or follow Orsay fashion on Facebook. Sales of up to 70 per cent are now on at all stores. 44 ∫ Pink July 2016
Performance 3D, from Dr Grandel, emphasises an eﬃcient cocktail of active, highly eﬃcient, modern anti-age and anti-stress ingredients, which supply the skin with intensive moisture, purge dryness, and noticeably reﬁll and reduce wrinkles, leaving a young, smooth, fresh and even look of the skin. Performance 3D Eye and Performance 3D Face give the skin the effective care it needs to correct the signs of time. The triple effect of skin relaxing, lifting, and bolstering repairs ﬁne lines and wrinkles in a multidimensional way. Performance 3D Ultra-Lift has a plumping and smoothing effect, even on ﬁne creases around the décolleté. The Diamond Focus Effect conceals lines and wrinkles amazingly quickly, leaving the skin looking and feeling smoother and more even. Call Reactilab Ltd on 9982 8498; 2141 2673.
EVERY DIMENSION OF EYES The Chanel Make-up Creation Studio presents a collection that reveals every dimension of the eyes. It includes a multidimensional mascara, an eyebrow deﬁnition kit, and powder and cream eyeshadows. Dimensions de Chanel mascara reveals every facet of the eyes, with intensely lengthened, delicately curled and subtly thickened lashes. La Palette Sourcils de Chanel is a duo of powders, Naturel and Brun, for a subtle, blended look. The complete kit includes tweezers to deﬁne the eyebrows, a brow brush to groom them, and a brush applicator to ﬁll in any thin areas with small touches of the selected shade. Les 4 Ombres and the Stylo Eyeshadow are available in three coordinating palettes. Chanel is distributed by Alfred Gera & Sons Ltd.
#MAKEGLAMOURHAPPEN The new Max Factor Voluptuous False Lash Effect Mascara is a breakthrough innovation with a next-generation Lash Uplift that instantly lifts lashes for a fuller, more voluptuous and glamorous look. The revolutionary Lash Uplift Brush design lifts lashes for ﬁve times more volume, thanks to its unique helix-shaped dimensions. Composed of alternating ﬁns and bristles, the brush catches and grips each individual lash, lifting from the base, then coats and combs every single one. The clever lash tool results in lifted, volumised and separated lashes to glamorously frame and open the eyes. For local trade enquiries, call VJ Salomone [Marketing] on 8007 2387.
BAGS OF PERSONALITY Since its creation in 1984, Boboli has been a restless child, its desire to grow only equalled by its zest for discovery: new experiences, new goals, new horizons. Its collections are full of colour, vitality and joy; full of innovation, fun and modernity – a unique style for kids with bags of personality. Exclusive designs are also comfortable, functional and durable, growing with the children through their childhood. The two collections per year include six lines: New Born, Baby, Kids, Acqua, Soft and Chic. Boboli has developed an exclusive retail concept so that shops provide the best showcase of its style, which is taking off in more than 50 countries. Boboli is in Tal-Hlas Road, Qormi. Follow it on Facebook: Bobolimalta.
BORN TO BE
beautıful Nee Make-Up brand manager Emiliana Nava believes that just as women want to hide their defects and enhance their better features, men too have the right to do so. Make-up is just an accessory to the face though – never the face itself. If you notice it, something has gone wrong.
our tool is make-up. What do you feel about people who never use it and would you consider leaving the house without it? Make-up should be an accessory on women’s faces and not be their face. Therefore, the most important thing about good make-up is that the person wearing it feels natural and comfortable. Make-up should be a choice. My mission is to show up its positive aspects and the techniques that can enhance every woman’s natural beauty.
to go out with your friends even after a work day. If you don’t have time to mix and match the perfect gloss every day, try Nee’s Sensual Gloss without colour for ready-to-kiss lips.
Of all the make-up products that we apply, what do you think is the single most important item that no one should really do without and that should always be in our handbag? Nee’s Brightﬂash Concealer and Trendy Gloss for the fashion victims and a red lipstick always offer the solution. If you’re running out of time, a touch of Brightﬂash gives back a fresh, just-woke-up look, making you feel amazing and ready
If you, personally, had to use only two items in your make-up bag, what would they be? The Lipstick Matte&Fluid n.60 [My Fav] and the Deep Black Extension Mascara.
Today’s life is fast. What do you suggest to women who are pressed for time, but still don’t want to forget their own grooming completely? What is the bare minimum? An amazing foundation that suits the skin type and tone and the perfect mascara.
When can make-up actually have a negative, rather than embellishing, effect? What’s the biggest mistake people make when applying everyday make-up? Pink July 2016 ∫ 45
BEAUTYPARLOUR If you look at a woman and the ﬁrst thing you notice about her is her make-up, then there’s a mistake. The ﬁrst impression should be how beautiful she is, how her lips look amazing in that colour and how her skin tone seems kissed by the sun. If you’re thinking her eye pencil is cool, then something is wrong. Instead, you should be thinking that her eyes look amazing and only notice after how she outlined her eyes with a good eye pencil. What is worse: too much or too little? Make-up is like salt when cooking. It’s better to always leave the opportunity to add a bit. When it is too much, the recipe is already ruined!
to achieve the photographer’s concept; the make-up is used as a painting tool to create an image that must become reality. For a wedding, or portrait photos, the make-up used takes into consideration the light, the main element that can inﬂuence, enhance, or ruin the ﬁnal result.
“MAKE-UP IS LIKE SALT WHEN COOKING. IT’S BETTER TO ALWAYS LEAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO ADD A BIT. WHEN IT IS TOO MUCH, THE RECIPE IS ALREADY RUINED!”
You’ve studied make-up for cinema, TV and theatre. Who would you most like to apply make-up to from these worlds? And whose look would you change completely if you could? Roberta, Davide, Stefania belong to my amazing make-up artist team. Davide would say the top models from fashion shows; Roberta would choose a theatre artist; and Stefania would like to use her brushes on the faces of the morning TV programmes.
What are the colours and the look of the season ahead? Give us some insight into the trends and how they differ from this season’s look. For the summer, what we see is a natural woman, ready to jump in the sea and sand. Nee’s Thank You Eyeshadow Shimmer Strips, a pale pink palette, can be blended to give that bonne mine ﬁnish.
Do you believe all women should undergo training in how to apply their own make-up at some stage in their life? Yes, otherwise what we learn to do when we are teenagers will follow us for the rest of our lives. We need to change make-up techniques like we change shoes and clothes, according to the season.
What’s the most innovative Nee product? Dual Matte Wear is the latest foundation. It was born as a normal compact foundation for a matte ﬁnish, but our clients turned it into a must-have. It can be used either wet or dry. If applied with a special foundation brush and used wet, it becomes a super light ﬂuid. And if you are ready to try it with contouring, it can be bought in the lighter/darker shades and used to create shadows and light.
What’s your advice to women to achieve a good blank canvas as a starting point to applying make-up? Use a good make-up primer and wisely choose the foundation and concealer. Follow the advice of a make-up artist and you will never fail. Your job also involves make-up for photo shoots. In what way does that differ from everyday make-up? It is completely different. It is also very different depending on the particular photo shoot. If it is for a magazine, the aim is
Do you think men should wear make-up too and will there come a time when they all will? Anyone should wear what makes them feel better. This is our philosophy! Make-up is not only lipsticks and mascaras. It is about foundations, scrubs, balms and a whole range of products also suitable for men. Why not? They are already taking care of their image and this is the next step. Just as women want to hide their defects and enhance their better features, men also have the right to do so!
48 ∫ Pink July 2016
Tattoos, breast implants and facelifts might look great when you first get them, but what happens a decade down the line? HELEN RAINE takes a look at the effects of ageing on permanent cosmetic procedures and discovers that the results aren’t always all that pretty. Having said that, she can’t say she will let herself age gracefully. Ask her in 10 years’ time. TATTS OFF Tattoos are becoming almost as commonplace as pierced ears, with one third of British adults under 45 sporting one, and the Maltese starting to follow suit. As the numbers increase, however, so does the chorus of voices regretting their indelible decision. A recent study by the British Association of Dermatologists found that over 30 per cent of people wished they had never gone under the needle. Author Dr Arif Aslam said: “We feel that it is important for people to know that it’s very likely … they will regret their tattoo. They are not that easy to remove and unwanted tattoos can affect people’s life chances and cause them upset and unhappiness.” Even if you still love the swallow on your wrist or your boyfriend’s name in swirly writing on your bottom, the years are not always kind to tattoos. The sharp blacks fade to sailor blue, the colours dissipate, and as you age, the images can stretch out of shape as your skin sags; pregnancy will also play havoc with anything in the midriff area. Imogen Edwards, writing in the Daily Mail, mourns her deci-
sion to get a tatt. She says: “What no one tells you… is that no matter how beautiful they look when ﬁrst done, they fade and shift over time.” She goes on: “I … thought my tattoos were the height of artistic expression. Now, whenever I’m trying to be glamorous or sophisticated, they rear their smudgy heads.” And she has a warning for wannabe tattooers: “You may not regret it in the morning but in 20 years’ time, when these follies of youth are still mocking you from your middle-aged folds and wrinkles, you will fervently wish you could turn back the clock.”
change your mind. The procedure is painful, expensive [especially in the case of larger tattoos] and can result in scarring, or only partial removal. One 30-minute session for a small area costs around €60; up to 20 sessions can be required, with coloured [especially green] tattoos the most diﬃcult to remove; large tattoos will take much longer. After the treatment, patients might have bleeding, blisters and swelling. Most people end up opting to cover the tattoo rather than trying to get rid of it. I know all this because my brother has his entire back inked with the image of a woman
“YOU MAY NOT REGRET IT IN THE MORNING BUT IN 20 YEARS’ TIME, WHEN THESE FOLLIES OF YOUTH ARE STILL MOCKING YOU FROM YOUR MIDDLE-AGED FOLDS AND WRINKLES, YOU WILL FERVENTLY WISH YOU COULD TURN BACK THE CLOCK” If you are determined to go ahead, then there are certain parts of the body that will weather the ageing process better. These include the back of the neck [which can also be easily hidden with hair], the inner forearm and the middle, lower back. But don’t count on “tattoo removal” as a safety net if you
wrapped in barbed wire and hung on a cross; it was done when he was 18 [quite possibly inebriated] and in the army. Now a family man, he can’t take his shirt off in front of his daughter. His removal consultation merely conﬁrmed that the procedure was out of his price range [and perhaps his pain threshold], leaving tattooing over Pink July 2016 ∫ 49
INTHEPINK the offending image his only option. When asked what he’d tell his younger self about tattoos, his language was as colourful as the inky lady in question. KEEPING ABREAST OF PHYSICS For women who’ve spent the years since puberty mourning the non-appearance of perfect breasts, implants can be a tempting prospect. And when they’re ﬁrst done, they defy the laws of gravity. But what goes up, must come down… and the weight of those two saline bags can eventually cause the skin to sag, leaving the equivalent of a football in a sock hanging around your lower ribs and requiring a mastopexy [uplift] to correct. The US Food and Drug Administration [FDA] says women need to understand that breast implants are not lifetime devices; “The longer a woman has them, the greater the chances that she will develop complications, some of which will require more surgery.” While
reasons, they may suffer from “cosmetically undesirable dimpling, puckering, or sagging of the natural breast”. A glance through pictures of the resulting mess might make you grateful for the natural bosom you currently have. There are other problems too, such as connective tissue diseases and issues with breast feeding or conceiving. The FDA has also “identiﬁed a possible association between breast implants and the development of ALCL, a rare type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma”. And since silicone implants can rupture, the FDA recommends women to have MRI screenings to detect silent ruptures three years after their surgery and every two years after that. FALLING FACES Facelifts can also be victims of gravity. Dr Michael Prager, a member of the British Association of Cosmetic Doctors, tells Pink that cosmetic surgery can speed up the ageing process:
Botox from a reasonably young age”. And he goes on: “The injection of Botox in the lower face prevents jowls and reduces the strength of the downwardpulling facial muscles. Dermal ﬁllers are instrumental in reducing and reversing the age-related changes caused by loss of bone and soft tissue.” Dr Prager compares the process to a size 8 dress looking too big when the body beneath it shrinks. “[This] does not mean it stretches, it just means the ﬁlling is gone.” He replaces this “ﬁlling” with Botox. He is dismissive of the idea that we should just age gracefully. “I don’t ﬁnd anything disgraceful about… injectable treatments. Most people who advocate graceful ageing are in fact ageing disgracefully due to the intake of sugar, alcohol, nicotine, meat, wheat, dairy, food in plastic packs, water in plastic bottles and cosmetics containing all sorts of toxic substances. One
“I DON’T FIND ANYTHING DISGRACEFUL ABOUT… INJECTABLE TREATMENTS. MOST PEOPLE WHO ADVOCATE GRACEFUL AGEING ARE IN FACT AGEING DISGRACEFULLY DUE TO THE INTAKE OF SUGAR, ALCOHOL, NICOTINE, MEAT, WHEAT, DAIRY, FOOD IN PLASTIC PACKS, WATER IN PLASTIC BOTTLES AND COSMETICS CONTAINING ALL SORTS OF TOXIC SUBSTANCES. ONE MIGHT AS WELL HAVE A BIT OF BOTOX OR THE ODD FILLER”
some women do keep their implants for 20 or 30 years, that is not the norm. The NHS estimates that about 30 per cent of women who have had implants will need more surgery within 10 years. And that’s when things get complicated. If women are not able to replace the implants for medical or ﬁnancial 50 ∫ Pink July 2016
“Facelifts which do not also include the injection of volume… will… make a person look older as they reduce the size of the face and create ﬂat, non-curvy areas around the cheek.” In his Wimpole Street practice in London, he often sees clients who regret surgeries done elsewhere. “Surgery can have a thinning effect on the skin. This will most likely lead to the ‘wind tunnel’ look later, post-surgery. The skin can also develop small, visible capillaries… The underlying tissue [and] the subcutaneous fat tissue appear to reduce in volume, most likely as a result of reduced blood supply due to scar formation and adhesions.” He says the alternative to surgery is the “intelligent use of dermal ﬁllers and
might as well have a bit of Botox or the odd ﬁller.” Dr Prager believes facial work should be “a part of the grooming regime, rather like a visit to the hygienist… This would also preclude surgery later in life as sagging cheeks can be treated and prevented with a few little injections earlier on”. So far, research suggests that there are relatively few problems with Botox and generally good results. When compared to going under the knife, it might be the lesser of two evils in the ﬁght against gravity. Or perhaps, we could just learn to love the skin we’re in, un-inked, un-implanted and incomparable. Ask me again in another 10 years.
THINKPI FOOD & HINS
PASSION FOR FOOD
HOW A LEGEND WAS BORN It was in Florence, in 1919. It is said that, on his return from England, Count Camillo Negroni asked his favourite bar to prepare his usual Americano with seven drops of gin instead of soda. A legend was born and still continues strong today. Ingredients include: 1 part Campari; 1 part Gin; 1 part Cinzano Rosso; a slice of orange. Pour everything directly into a rock glass ﬁlled with ice. Garnish with a slice of orange. Campari is marketed by Farsons Beverage Imports Co. For trade enquiries, call on 2381 4400.
SUMMER AT MADLIENA LODGE Set in the countryside with unobstructed views of the sea and easy private parking, Madliena Lodge combines the beautiful colours of the Mediterranean with a dynamic new menu that has been crafted to make the most of the freshest ﬂavours and best seasonal produce. It was taken over last year and the new team completely transformed the historic lodge by introducing a contemporary style and working with a professional team to create an elevated, yet informal, dining experience. “Refurbishing Madliena Lodge was our ﬁrst priority to make it a space our clients can really enjoy,” explained Duncan Barbaro Sant, one of the directors. “We also introduced a lounge bar, which is a more laidback space, where friends can gather for a cocktail, or a glass of wine, accompanied by delicious bar food and platters. The new summer menu reﬂects the team’s dedication to innovative cuisine and highquality ingredients. Highlights include the Parmesan Panna Cotta, Avocado King Prawn Salad with Gazpacho, and Drunken Mussels Casseruola to start with, followed by the Scorzone Truﬄe Risotto, Grilled Red Maltese Tuna, or Tagliata of Rib-Eye. Dessert favourites include their trademark Ferrero Roche Mousse and Aperol Spritz Sorbet. For clients keen to sample a bit of everything, a seasonal Degustation Menu allows the kitchen brigade to showcase their signature dishes and techniques. Meanwhile, the Lounge menu also has something for everyone, including the Panko-Fried Camembert Bites, Madliena’s Slow Cooked Single Ribs and the Gourmet Homemade Burger. It is ideal for a more relaxed meal, while watching a football game, or listening to live music every Friday.
For a truly authentic Maltese evening, it’s time for a delicious dinner at the top-rated, awardwinning, family-run, understatedly elegant Ta’ Marija Restaurant, set in the pretty town of Mosta. Voted Best Restaurant for Maltese Food, Ta’ Marija prides itself of over 50 years of experience in hospitality, so the night comes with a delightful touch of history too. Very well-known to both locals and foreigners, this Maltese cuisine restaurant offers fabulous entertainment and a lively atmosphere, without compromising on glorious and genuine traditional food. It’s about welcoming surroundings, exceptional service and a place where you can dine, dance and sparkle! And don’t forget the all-inclusive carvery buffet on Saturday evenings and Sunday family lunches at €25, including a medley of Mediterranean and Maltese dishes, and unlimited wine, water and coffee! Or you can enjoy the Maltese extravaganza night every Wednesday and Friday, complete with a superb dance show by folklore dancers in Maltese traditional costumes. Ta’ Marija Restaurant is in Constitution Street, Mosta. For more information, call on 2143 4444; or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org; www.tamarija.com
TIME TO CHILL Summer is here and what can be more refreshing than an ice-cold Cisk Chill Lemon or berryﬂavoured lager beer? Cisk Chill is a ﬂavoured lager beer with four per cent alcohol – an ideal refreshing product, just great for chilling out and relaxing at the end of a hot summer’s day. Cisk Chill Lemon and Cisk Chill Berry are a further extension to the Cisk family, which also includes Cisk Lager, Cisk Pilsner, Cisk Excel Low-Carb Lager and Cisk Extra Strong Lager. They are available from leading outlets across Malta and Gozo. Become a Facebook fan: www.facebook.com/ciskchill
WIKO NOW IN MALTA Malta welcomes one of the most colourful and vibrant smartphone brands – Wiko. Created in 2011 in Marseille, France, Wiko today is the fastest growing mobile brand in Europe, enjoying strong presence in over 30 countries, including 18 per cent market share in France and is a top three brand in Italy and Portugal. Wiko has distinguished itself as a ‘game changer’ thanks to its spirit of creativity, design, audacious colours and a friendly yet determined attitude. The idea is to demystify technology and let people appreciate real mobile phone value for money. Wiko’s oﬃcial launch at Café Del Mar celebrated the arrival of the French smartphone brand in Malta. “We are very excited to launch our brand here and our strategy will be to aﬃrm our ‘game changer’ attitude in the local smartphone market. With the support of Sound Machine, we will expand our business by widening our presence and our distribution network”, declared Simone Tornaghi, Southern Europe area director at Wiko. Together with its exclusive distributor Sound Machine, Wiko feels the Maltese customer will appreciate the brand as a breath of fresh air. “We decided to establish close cooperation with Wiko and use our extensive experience and expertise in the local consumer electronics market to ensure a thorough market penetration backed up by top-notch back oﬃce and customer service facilities to guarantee a solid foundation for a long-term project that is gaining impressive momentum on the international scene,” said Eman Castagna, CEO of Sound Machine. The exciting range of Wiko smartphones, including the easy and accessible Sunset 2, the amazing Fever – the smartphone that glows in the dark – as well as the revolutionary Ufeel smartphone, the latest addition to the range, featuring an innovative ﬁngerprint sensor, will be available from all Sound Machine outlets as well as authorised re-sellers. Visit the Wiko Malta Facebook page. www.soundmachine.com.mt 52 ∫ Pink July 2016
Bullies ARE MADE NOT BORN Dott. EDWARD CURMI tackles the brutes head on, and reminds us that their behaviour towards their victims is never personal, but a projection of their own hurt.
ullying is known to cause a great deal of misery in people’s lives, and it may take decades, perhaps even a lifetime, to heal. It may happen in a school, neighbourhood, relationship, or work environment. So what do we know about people who choose to bully others? And how can we handle such unpleasant characters? Fundamentally, a bully is someone who deliberately chooses to hurt and humiliate someone.
Bullying starts from a young age Most people will try an act of aggression once or twice in their life, but usually, they will feel uncomfortable and grow out of it. A bully will start being aggressive at an early stage in life and will keep on behaving in the same manner throughout. Is bullying on the increase? Unfortunately, today, reports of bullying are on the increase. In most countries, 15 per cent of schoolchildren used to say they were bullied at some point in time. Today, statistics are looking at 30 per cent of children reporting cases of bullying. Are children more aware of bullying and reporting it more, or are we living in a society where children are resorting to more aggressive tactics at school? It takes two to tango According to psychologist Debra Pepler, bullying is a ‘macabre dance’ between two people
with opposing traits. On the one hand, bullies are usually people who are not liked and feared by others. On the other, victims of bullying are usually sensitive and anxious in nature. Unlike bullies, they are uncomfortable around aggression and are pervasively non-assertive. Pepler believes that the act of bullying is a kind of chemistry due to the law of opposites. There are different types of bullies Most research seems to be indicating two types of bullies: the classic playground bullies, who are typically downright aggressive and enjoy overpowering others without any need to be provoked; and what Dr David Perry, professor of psychology, calls reactive bullies, who get angry easily and have a strong belief that they are being provoked.
“WHILE MEN OFTEN RESORT TO PHYSICAL AGGRESSION, FEMALES PREFER TO DAMAGE OR MANIPULATE THEIR RELATIONSHIPS IN AVERSIVE WAYS” Also, men and women have different of bullying tactics. While men often resort to physical aggression, females prefer to damage or manipulate their relationships in aversive ways. Bullies are made not born According to Gerald Patterson, who studied families for 20 years, the parent-child interaction could be the key to such aversive behaviour. In his studies, he concluded that a neglectful parent-child relationship could be one of the factors that leads to children behaving badly around others. Also, Patterson suggests that when parents resort to aggressive tactics such as name calling, Pink July 2016 ∫ 53
PINKSHRINK emotional blackmail, or physical punishment, they are possibly introducing their children to bullying strategies.
Do not get upset Whatever the case, never feed a bully. After all, bullies are like pigeons; if you feed them once, they will come back and keep on pestering you for more.
How to handle a bully? Remember the issue is not yours When a bully approaches you, whatever they choose to say to you, it has nothing to do with you. Their hurtful approach is nothing but a reﬂection of their own hurt, which they are projecting on to you. It’s never personal. Build self-confidence Learn to love yourself whenever you are in the presence of a bully. Remind yourself of your worth and accomplishments. Naturally, bullies are often attracted to people who lack self-conﬁdence, especially because it gives them the chance to overpower the other.
“BULLIES ARE LIKE PIGEONS; IF YOU FEED THEM ONCE, THEY WILL COME BACK AND KEEP ON PESTERING YOU FOR MORE” Seek support Build a good support system around you, especially if you are encountering a bully in your daily life. Ample research shows that seeking the right type of support and sharing what is happening to you can possibly avoid unnecessary pain.
Use humour When used correctly, a good sense of humour can deﬂate a bully in a second. Bullies often know that when they are around people with a good sense of humour, it is unlikely that these would take their provocation seriously as they take everything with a pinch of salt.
Try to face them Bullies thrive off fear. The worst thing you can do to them is avoid them. By avoiding them, you are only showing them that you are not able to handle their aversive behaviour. Staying serene when you happen to bump into them is a necessity to interrupt the cycle of aggression.
Be assertive Stand up for your rights and show a bully that you mean business. There is no need to make a big deal about it, but just stand your ground while keeping in mind that you have rights as much as others do.
Dott. Edward Curmi is a registered clinical psychologist, psychotherapist and author of the book Common Sense: a Better Understanding of Emotional Well-being, and its newly launched sequel More Common Sense: a Better Understanding of Emotional Well-being, available from Agenda Bookshops.
THE VIRGINIA MONOLOGUES
he other day, I came across a post in an allfemale Facebook group about jealousy. Here was one woman openly admitting that every time her husband made [or should I say added] a new female friend on his Facebook page, she experienced uncontrollable jealousy. I found it rather brave of course. Jealousy is not an easy thing to admit to. Like losing your temper, being an obnoxious drunk, or an incorrigible gambler, people are usually in denial and loathe to admit it, preferring instead to play jealousy down. Baring your soul in front of 8,000 plus women takes an unusual honesty and courage, which is to be applauded. The reactions were various, of course, and most of them predictably washed their hands off jealousy like a disease they wanted nothing to do with. They told of the dangers of jealousy and of how essential trust was to a healthy and functional relationship. Boring. And easier said than done of course. I
was always on the verge of commenting to give this woman some unpatronising advice, but never got down to it, and when I went back to look for the thread, it had naturally disappeared, overtaken by a gazillion other updates and posts. So I decided to write this instead.
And it goes way beyond jealousy between spouses of course. The ﬁrst time jealousy rears its ugly head, you are usually in nappies having to contend with the arrival of a new sibling – sibling rivalry and intra-family jealousy are a lifelong occupation in some quarters, which
“THE TRUTH OF THE MATTER IS THAT JEALOUSY IS A UNIVERSAL EMOTION AND PROBABLY, WITH VERY FEW [OR NO] EXCEPTIONS, SOMETHING WE HAVE ALL EXPERIENCED AT SOME POINT IN OUR LIFE” Of course, it’s all very well to dish out the advice and wisdom from on high, but of course, the truth of the matter is that jealousy is a universal emotion and probably, with very few [or no] exceptions, something we have all experienced at some point in our life. However much we pretend that we are above it, it is something that can’t be helped.
can scar you for life. Spend a day in court and you will soon discover that the large majority of cases illustrate this domestic rivalry abundantly. Then, of course, there’s jealousy at the workplace between colleagues vying for the same position, with that one co-worker always landing more attention and perks from the boss; jealousy between Pink July 2016 ∫ 57
GIRLTALK friends [my son is careering ahead and jealousy gives people power over you. this woman’s case, for instance, she my boat is bigger and better than More signiﬁcantly, jealousy gives the should feel much happier with the fact yours] is another very tiring and soulobject of your jealousy a very real that her husband is openly adding destroying thing to contend with. power over you. And ironically, when these women to his Facebook page But I will limit myself to jealousy you are not remotely jealous of your because that shows a certain ‘honesty’ between spouses because that, after signiﬁcant other, you are the one who and above board-ness [a word from all, was what this Facebook post was wields power over him. my own mint]. People who are up to about. However much we may poohIt’s an interesting phenomenon no good would not be advertising the pooh, or pretend we are above it, we really because, of course, it creates a fact on Facebook by becoming friends. have probably all been guilty of some vicious cycle: the more jealous you You don’t need to be someone’s Faceform of relationship jealousy at some are, the more power someone else has book friend to start a chat after all. juncture even if we are strictly ‘not the over you; the more power that someLike everything else, moderation jealous type’. one has over you, the more likely you is key and there is an upside to everyYou see, jealous type or not, more are to be jealous of him/her and the thing. I confess that I enjoy feeling a often than not, jealousy has little to do more insecure you will feel. Jealousy is teeny-weeny bit jealous, and when I with you. You may not be the jealous a lose-lose all the way. don’t, I worry. I am not sure why, or type at all until you meet that one perUnfortunately, more often than not, wherefore, but I have always found son who will drive you to distraction it is useless telling someone that they that a little bit of jealousy is a good and the point of no return. thing. As long as it is jealSo although you may not ousy that you can keep “KNOW THAT JEALOUSY IS EASILY THE experience jealousy for under wraps and as long as years, one ﬁne day, you it does not interfere with MOST UNATTRACTIVE EMOTION IN THE wake up and realise that your relationship. BOOK AND HIGHLY OFF-PUTTING. AND you have turned into the But I also think that NO RELATIONSHIP CAN EVER SURVIVE green-eyed monster that when you are unnaturally ONCE JEALOUSY GETS A FOOT IN. IT’S A had been dormant for jealous to the point where DOWNWARD SPIRAL FROM THERE ON” years. it does affect you, the likeliJealousy is intricately hood is that you are not linked to a person’s conﬁdence and it should just stop being jealous, being treated the way you should be. all boils down to security issues… with because like most irrational emotions, Because if a man makes you feel the more insecure and less conﬁdent it is not something you can switch on secure, no amount of women on his among us being more prone to bouts and off at will. Try telling someone Facebook page will make you jealous. of it. It might also explain why age that they shouldn’t be afraid of cockMy advice: Learn to turn jealousy does, by and large, abate and tame the roaches and lizards. It’s the same into a joke and a good thing. Laugh it issue somewhat. Not so much because thing. Chances are the more you tell off. The ﬁrst step to curing yourself of age magically makes you less jealous, someone not to be, the more insecure something is to admit to it. That way, but because age does wonders for and jealous they will feel. you are bringing it out in the open and making people feel happier with The only way you can hope to connot letting it fester. But whatever you themselves and more conﬁdent in trol jealousy is by making a conscious do, do not ever let rip and lose your their skin. effort to keep your reactions in check cool. Once you understand that jealYou are more likely to have and to try to control your thoughts ousy is going to have the opposite accepted the nose God gave you at the and feelings. It takes discipline and effect to the one you intend and is age of 40 than you are at 20. And by very hard work and it might even only going to push your partner furthe time you hit 40, you realise that if involve a number of mind games. It ther and further away from you, you people don’t like the way you look, or takes practice, but over time, like will realise just how futile and silly an the way you speak, they can get on everything else, it becomes easier and emotion it is. their bike. easier. There are an inﬁnite number of If someone is tired of you and So yes, age deﬁnitely does have that things you can do – from counting to wants out, they will ﬁnd a way of going for it. You are far less likely to a hundred to self-suggestion, or even leaving far quicker if you are jealous. care what people think of you and less indulging in some form of displaceUnderstand that and know that jeallikely to care what people think, ment activity when you feel an unconousy is easily the most unattractive period. trollable urge coming on. emotion in the book and highly offNow, although age is deﬁnitely There are other ways of unlearning putting. And no relationship can ever helpful when it comes to dealing jealousy and trying to get to grips with survive once jealousy gets a foot in. It’s with that rather unfortunate aspect it. For instance, I ﬁnd that I am always a downward spiral from there on. of our existence, I think the most much more comfortable with things I email@example.com useful mantra to keep in mind is that can see than with things I can’t. So in
58 ∫ Pink July 2016
LOVE OF YOUR LIFE no car remains so affectionately in ANDREA FAYE CHRISTIAN’s heart as the mini. she learnt to drive in one and had the pleasure of owning one as her ﬁrst car. she had countless mini adventures and still, today, after all these years, every time she sees a mini, she feels an aﬃnity. and she is not alone…
he Mini reminds me of that deﬁning moment – when I passed my driving test in my little car. That moment became a rite of passage of personal freedom and independence that allowed me to go where I wanted and to be beholden to no one. Innumerable friends have tales to tell of their own experiences. One recently recounted how his ﬁrst car was a 1959 Mini that came complete with sliding windows and a start button on the ﬂoor. He had bought it off an elderly lady who had owned it for years, but had decided to change to another car only to ring him back a month later and plead with him to let her buy it back.
part. Holes in the ﬂoor were welded, subframes replaced and the paint resprayed before my Mini was passed onto my brother, who kept it for another ﬁve years before selling it on. So what is the appeal, one may ask? For one, the car will always remain quintessentially British [even though it is now owned by BMW], and when driving, you are behind the wheel of something that is both practical and stylish – both important attributes. Now in its third generation, the new Mini is a worthy successor, and BMW could be said to be the remaking of the brand as it has retained much of what characterised the car, while giving it a
“With the sunshine in my hair, i Was that teenage girl again – only in a far more luxurious and faster version of What i had once oWned” Even my son followed in my footsteps, and whenever he’s on leave in Malta, his means of transport is a lovingly cared for 1981 Mini Cooper. In retrospect, I’m sure my car used to run on fresh air, and if something needed replacing, you just bought a whole new
distinct modern twist in what is a highly competitive sector of the small car market. Couple all that with a convertible version and you have a car that is perfect for Malta in that it combines an iconic name and high standards of workmanship with performance in a neatly perfected pack-
age. Indeed, the Mini is testimony to the fact that big isn’t always beautiful and adding a convertible to the stable is just – well – fun! The metallic turquoise colour, aptly named Caribbean Aqua, and leather seats of the Mini Cooper Convertible scream “look at me” as we set off from Muscats Motors. At the traﬃc lights, the 1499cc engine leaves everything behind with its phenomenal acceleration that makes you have to watch the speedometer not to fall foul of speed cameras. With such good looks and great performance, the Mini Convertible epitomises living the dream in Malta for any small car fan. With the sunshine in my hair, I was that teenage girl again – only in a far more luxurious and faster version of what I had once owned. Driving back to the garage, I inadvertently found myself doing the sums to see if I could actually afford to buy the car I was driving, which, in 20 years of road testing, has never happened before. For those who can, the New Mini Convertible has ﬁve models available and starts from €24,400. When you drive it, you’ll understand why once you’re a Mini lover you’ll always be one! Pink July 2016 ∫ 63
THE FUTURE IS
PINK ARIES MARCH 20-APRIL 18 After having wrestled with numerous obstacles, some practical, a few involving close alliances, personal or professional, suddenly those battles end. Mostly this is no surprise, but in some situations, it’s an unexpected relief. Better yet, this frees you to focus on happy developments involving who and what you care about most. Take this opportunity to relax and explore activities or studies that promise to broaden your horizons. Be bold. Pursue what, and who, seems promising. You’ll beneﬁt from everything you explore and do.
CANCER JUNE 20-JULY 21 The primary focus during August is your resources, although initially, dilemmas will appear in such diverse forms you won’t always recognise they’re linked. But all involve what and who is worth your while and how well you’re compensated for your efforts. You acknowledge you’re investing time, money and possibly heart in certain unrewarding situations. Admittedly, this isn’t easy. But it’s a ﬁrst step to either exchanging those activities and alliances that are a drain for something better or improving on existing ones.
LIBRA SEPTEMBER 22-OCTOBER 21 Usually others come to you for advice about handling diﬃcult situations or individuals. Yet during August, the complexities of certain alliances or the need for diplomacy limit discussion. Meanwhile, you’re considering whether onceprized arrangements should continue. While they’ve been burdensome, you’re hoping to ﬁnd a solution. Instead, take a break. Suddenly, you’re viewing these situations and your priorities from a fresh perspective. This will shape the plans you make, but probably not until early September.
CAPRICORN DECEMBER 21-JANUARY 19 Watching arrangements you struggled to organise fall apart is no fun. Yet, deep down, you’ve known these would have to go, so view the developments behind these changes as timely. The challenge is to ignore the temptation to ﬁnd something new right away. This leaves a gap in your life. But it forces you to focus on those seemingly unimportant matters you’ve been ignoring. These are crucial, as you swiftly realise. So much so that what you learn from dealing with them could change everything. 64 ∫ Pink July 2016
According to astrologer SHELLEY VON STRUNCKEL… TAURUS
APRIL 19-MAY 19 August is about wonderful, if often unexpected, events. What arises involves your domestic life, and the balance between matters at home and your activities out in the world. There’s a link between these and the practical and ﬁnancial side of arrangements, with changes and new ideas bringing welcome improvements. The challenge is balancing these with surprise events – sometimes unsettling – in the lives of those closest. Express your concerns. The resulting discussions will explain a lot and bring you closer.
MAY 20-JUNE 19 You’re usually the ﬁrst to know about exciting developments, so others rely on you to organise social events and future plans. Now, however, decisions are up to those closest in your personal or working life. Leave things to them, even if they ask for help or their ideas are unwise. This frees you to explore intriguing offers, most involving unfamiliar activities or settings. The resulting insights will be rewarding now, but crucial when unexpected events arise in a few weeks’ time.
JULY 22-AUGUST 21 Since early 2016, there’s been a powerful planetary focus on your lifestyle – domestic and out in the world – and on close relationships. Thrilling as events have been, you’re now facing changes, a few dramatic and unclear as to what’s next. The Leo New Moon on August 2 brings feelings and circumstances to a head. You’ll consider your priorities, then make decisions, some for now, others for the future. Be bold. You’ll only regret what you didn’t do, not what you did.
AUGUST 22-SEPTEMBER 21 Familiar and often fundamental elements of your life are coming undone. This is worrying, yet no surprise, since attempts to update several arrangements have been unsuccessful. It’s disappointing but also a relief, especially where the foundation is being eroded. While ordinarily, you’d struggle to shore things up, your lesson is to let go, then move on. In many cases, you’ve already discussed this with others who agree. Better yet, you’re well aware what’s next. You need only take that ﬁrst step.
OCTOBER 22-NOVEMBER 20 Initially, it may seem that, in making progress in one area, you must undermine others. Instead, it’s about pausing and rethinking certain activities and alliances you once regarded as core to your life. Times have changed and so have you, more than you’re prepared to admit. Acknowledging this isn’t easy. But it gives you the freedom to explore intriguing offers you’ve previously refused or which you worried would cause upset. This fresh perspective opens the doors to new, exciting, yet unexpected options.
NOVEMBER 21-DECEMBER 20 Although you’ve learnt lots over the past several months, it hasn’t been easy. Your freedom’s been curtailed or others made decisions for you. The return by Mars, planet of ego and courage, to Sagittarius on August 2 boosts your spirits. Better yet, you’re suddenly able to recognise how those recent diﬃculties cleared your mind and altered your priorities. So much, you’re now ready to pursue exciting but challenging personal or career objectives that, only recently, you’d have regarded as beyond your reach.
JANUARY 20-FEBRUARY 18 Obviously, setbacks of any variety are disappointing. But those you’re currently facing involve situations that promised to take centre stage in your life. Bizarrely, watching these vanish is a relief. Besides, you no longer have an excuse to ignore other less exciting but more pivotal developments. True, they’d take you into unfamiliar territory, so much so that you’ve been really anxious. Despite that, your instincts say these are ideal for you. Much as you’d like to debate this, those feelings are right.
FEBRUARY 19-MARCH 19 The most important thing to bear in mind during August is that, pivotal as certain decisions seem, they’re about undoing past arrangements, and in doing so, freeing you. But they’ll give you time and space to focus on new and somewhat intimidating ideas, offers or alliances. While these may seem too good to be true, this is one of those rare times when things really are that good. Still, there’s one challenge. You’ll need to venture into unknown, but exciting, territory.
Visit www.shelleyvonstrunckel.com to learn more and order your own chart.
Hitting A the right notes Soprano Nicola Said feels privileged to have been chosen to sing Malta’s praises all over the world – literally. And on a lighter note, the Malta Airport Foundation ambassador finds that the shower provides the perfect testing ground to warm up and memorise her words before a performance. We can expect her to be doing lots of that in the runup to her participation in Joseph Calleja’s annual summer concert.
t what point in your life did you realise you had a voice to be reckoned with? And when did you start taking your talent seriously? My parents recount that I have been singing since I was very little. When I was around nine years old, my piano and choir teachers encouraged my mother to send me to singing lessons. I have been taking my singing very seriously since then and always enjoyed studying singing far more than piano practice. Once I went to Edinburgh, I discovered it was possible to make a career out of singing, so the bar was raised. Had you not had the opportunity to study music in London, how much do you think your career as a soprano would have flourished here? And what is lacking in Malta in terms of career development in this field? I think it would have been very difficult to gain the same level of experience, which I acquired over the past 10 years of studying in London at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. I also trained at the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music in the US, where I landed my first three operatic roles. Malta has a huge amount of raw talent
and more initiatives are being undertaken in order to nurture and promote it. However, with regard to opportunities for opera singers, these are still very much lacking mainly because there is no proper opera house. Does being a soprano cut you off, so to speak, from your generation, which is probably not into your sort of music? My world is a mix of people who love and live for classical music and opera and others I connect with on a completely different level. I spend a lot of time surrounded by musicians of all ages and nationalities, however, I greatly cherish some of my closest friends whom I have known since I was little and who genuinely care about me. Opera apart, I do enjoy other genres of music; in fact, a good glass of wine and dinner in a jazz bar in Valletta is possibly one of my favourite ways to spend the evening. It’s not the first time you have performed with the worldrenowned tenor Joseph Calleja. So what does your participation in his annual Maltese summer concert on July 28 mean to you and how are you gearing up for it? I have performed with him in every Christmas concert, but the summer concert is even more special because it has become a much anticipated and heavily attended event. As for preparations, I am doing what I do in the run-up to every performance, making sure my voice remains in shape and being musically prepared. And how do you feel about performing to quite a large audience in Malta? I think this will be the biggest audience I will be performing in front of locally since my participation in Voices back in 2004, so I’m quite excited. It’s also my first opportunity to represent the Malta Airport Foundation on such a big stage. Pink July 2016 ∫ 65
SNAPSHOT How do you feel crossover concerts of the sort have helped to bring opera to the public? And do you think there is still a long way to go for it to be appreciated as much as it should by the man in the street? I think that although crossover concerts have helped bring famous arias to the public, there still is a misunderstanding about what the art of opera is and what training is required in order to become a professional opera singer. The techniques that have to be mastered by an opera singer are different from those of a crossover singer. There’s definitely a long way to go for opera to be appreciated in its fullest form. You already have a number of awards under your belt. But what do you feel is your greatest achievement to date in any aspect of your life? I think that my professional debut as Zerbinetta was a great achievement as it was both a main role and one I had been dreaming of singing for quite some time. I also feel very proud of my role as the Malta Airport Foundation’s ambassador, espe-
“I THINK THAT ALTHOUGH CROSSOVER CONCERTS HAVE HELPED BRING FAMOUS ARIAS TO THE PUBLIC, THERE STILL IS A MISUNDERSTANDING ABOUT WHAT THE ART OF OPERA IS AND WHAT TRAINING IS REQUIRED IN ORDER TO BECOME A PROFESSIONAL OPERA SINGER” cially since the work it’s doing is enhancing what the Maltese Islands have to offer; from heritage to our beautiful underwater environment to the Maltese language. What would you say has been your favourite opera role to date? The one that suits you most? My professional debut as Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos, without a doubt. In what way has the support of Malta Airport Foundation opened doors for you and broadened your horizons? Why do you think you were chosen to be its ambassador? Apart from supporting my studies, the foundation has opened doors for me because I feel that I am not simply a singer, but a singer with something more to say... with a message to carry. In being the foundation’s ambassador, I can promote Malta as a unique island that is
worth visiting when I’m performing overseas. I feel privileged to have been chosen to sing Malta’s praises all over the world. Do you sing in the shower? I find the shower provides the perfect test place to warm up and memorise my words before a performance. What sound hurts your ears? I tend to be quite sensitive to sounds and techno gives me quite the headache if it is too loud. I’m not sure if this is common among trained musicians. How far would you go to protect your voice? As far as I need to go. Where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time? Sharing my operatic experiences on the world’s stages with my own little family.