Malta’s performing arts scene has been hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis, and as we enter this phase of ‘new normality’ it’s never been more crucial to support artistic initiatives.
As we edge closer to summer, we’re all in a celebratory mood, and what better way to kick off the summer season than a fully-fledged art festival?
Enter the Malta International Arts Festival.
Whilst the original festival line-up had to be postponed to 2021, the Festivals Malta’s Malta International Arts Festival has created an entirely new online programme, in collaboration with Spazju Kreattiv, Teatru Malta, Malta Philharmonic Orchestra and the Malta Society of Arts, to fit the social distancing measures.
But that doesn’t mean it’s going to be any less entertaining and exciting!
Starting from 19th June, the MIAF Online Edition is 17 days and a jam-packed programme boasting 12 video performances from some of the best artists in Malta, centring around three artistic disciplines – dance, theatre and music.
Ah yes, the important questions.
Eclectic dance pieces by Dorian Mallia, Pamela Kerr and Rochelle Gatt will explore artistic boundaries with music performances by local musicians.
These include a selection of preludes by Claude Debussy performed by pianist Francis Camilleri, French Suite by William Kraft for solo percussion performed by Luke Baldacchino and an electronic music soundscape composed and performed by Luc Houtkamp.
For those who appreciate Malta’s national language, local writer Trevor Zahra will feature his new monologue “Ir-Ruman” which will be interpreted by actor Joseph Galea.
There will also be a performance of “Mewġa”, a monologue written and directed by Simone Spiteri and performed by André Mangion, and 77 and 7 DAYS, another monologue piece directed by Malcolm Galea featuring actor Mikhail Basmadjian.
Lovers of classical music can look forward to three music ensembles in collaboration with Spazju Kreattiv and the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra. These ensembles will feature String Quartet segments by late Maltese composer Joseph Vella, a Woodwind Quartet of two chamber music compositions and a Horn Quartet with three arrangements by Etienne Cutajar.
And a whole lot more!
2020’s MIAF Online Edition will also include a segment, titled Opera Highlights, which will feature during the Festivals Malta Hybrid Festival, a music festival which will tour over 50 localities around the island and bring you the best local artists right to your hometown’s streets.
The two-week initiative will take place right before the start of summer. You can catch the MIAF Online Edition between 19th June and 5th July. So make your calendar, find a recipe for your favourite comfort food, grab your friends and enjoy.
As MIAF’s artistic director Ruben Zahra said, “Arts and culture are perhaps even more important now than ever. We need to reach out to our audiences and engage our artists so that creativity may shine through the dark clouds.”
This programme feels like it’s going to do just that.