Eight concerts will form the 8th Edition of the International Spring Orchestra Festival taking place between the 22nd and the 26th of April at the Teatru Manoel.
Hosted every year in April, the International Spring Orchestra Festival is the brainchild of artistic director and Paris-based composer Karl Fiorini.
“I am delighted to say that organising this Festival has been an annual challenge however the very positive feedback that this event has been garnering kept confirming its growing popularity,” says Mr Fiorini who started off this project with the establishment of the Association International Spring Orchestra Festival (ISOFestival) in December 2005.
Since then the Festival has seen the participation of some of the best of breed of Maltese talent including the likes of Brian Schembri and violinist Carmine Lauri.
“The aim of the festival is not just to make good music but also to serve as a platform for young local talent. The idea of the Festival is also to create partnerships with the invited orchestras – having artistic exchanges not based simply on an invitation to perform. Soloists are in turn invited to perform in the guest’s artist homeland and perform Maltese compositions abroad,” explained Karl Fiorini.
Speaking about the programme, Mr Fiorinin added “there is a pool of local musicians that I want to work with, because I personally believe in their artistic capabilities and excellence. The same goes for the invited artists. The choice of program has been conceived between all those involved.”
“This year will be truly unforgettable especially since Lucia Micallef will be making a comeback on the Maltese concert platform during this year’s Edition. The Festival has also established a new partnership agreement with the European Union Chamber Orchestra of UK and will this year offer performances by Maltese talent including Brian Schembri, Charlene Farrugia and Clare Ghigo who will all perform together with the Argotti Ensemble and Cosmos Wind Ensemble,” added Karl Fiorini.
The Cosmos Wind Ensemble will kick-off the ISOFestival on Tuesday 22nd April with a program of virtuosic and tongue-in-cheek works, some of which composed specifically for the Cosmos Ensemble, by local composers Veronique Vella, Albert Garzia and Ruben Zahra.
Mezzo-soprano Clare Ghigo will be teaming up with “l’enfant terrible” of Maltese pianism, Charlene Farrugia on Thursday 24th April to give us a rendition of works by de Falla, Obradors, Strauss, Kurt Weill and Rueben Pace, concert titled Songs my mother taught me. Some of us will remember Ghigo from last year’s edition with a terrific interpretation of de Falla’s El amor Brujo. This concert will leave the audience equally trilled.
On Friday 25th the Argotti string quartet comprising Maria Conrad, Nemanja Ljubinkovic Aureliano Balducci, and Akos Kertesz, will be performing Korngold’s 2nd string quartet, two pieces for string quartet, by Dmitri Shostakovich and Ravel’s famous String Quartet in F major. A must for string quartet lovers!
The ISOFestival will close on Saturday 26th April with Lucia Micallef playing four Bach keyboard concertos featuring the European Union Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Malta’s most loved conductor, Brian Schembri.
This year’s edition of the ISOFestival is being generously supported by the Ministry of Finance, the ADRC Trust, the Malta Stock Exchange and D&G Advocates.
Lunchtime concerts are at 12:30, Sala Isouard. Concerts are free, open donation at the door, except for Friday and Saturday’s concerts. Reservations can be made on www.teatrumanoel.com.mt or [email protected] or by calling 2124 6389.
[alerts title=”A Brief History of the Festival” type=”warning”]
The first edition, held under the patronage of HE the President of the Republic of Malta was held in April 2007 and involved 25 musicians from different countries who convened in Malta for master classes with world renowned musicians and performed a week-long programme of six concerts. Year in year out, the Festival kept growing and although spanning a week, more and more musicians started being involved.
In 2010, the Festival ventured out of its confines of Teatru Manoel and saw the first outreach program with a concert at Mater Dei hospital. This edition saw 7 concerts which were all fully-booked. A year later, the outreach program was successfully repeated and also included the first educational workshops for children. Concerts were also performed at The Point shopping mall in Tignè as well as at Marsaskala’s waste plant. Eleven concerts with the participation of 52 musicians and an attendance of over 2,000 patrons saw another fully-booked edition.
Last year, the Festival established a partnership with the Ensemble Télémaque, Marseille and the Marseille 20013 European Capital of Culture and involved 60 musicians.