It has been a couple of weeks since the 25th edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, and the return to the Floriana Granaries was very well received by the public present. With all the festivities surrounding Independence Day back to their roots, the evening was buzzing with an air of excitment, and following the performance of 24 participating entries; 20 pre-qualified in the ‘Talent Stabbilit’, 1 through with the same category via tele-voting and another 3 which came through ‘Talent Ġdid’, the winner was announced as “Se Naslu Żgur”, written by Ray Agius, and sung by Dario Bezzina.
Hosted by Toni Busuttil, Mireille Bonello and Christine Haber, this year's edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, which was aired on NET Television, saw a smooth transition of performances, with the the list of participating artists featuring a good mixture of newcomers and veterans. The professional members of the jury was made up of a mixture of musicians, and media personalities, instantly recognisable by many. A full list of the results may be viewed below.
24th place: “Ippruvajt” (Dominic Cini / Rita Pace) - Odessa
Best Young Talent: “Vittoja” (Mark Scicluna / Emil Calleja Bayliss) - Shaun Zaffarese
Televoting Award: “Speċjali” (Renato Briffa / Rita Pace) - Aidan Cassar
01st place: “Se Naslu Żgur” (Ray Agius) - Dario Bezzina
On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to congratulate the winners circle, as well as the other 19 participants who made this year's edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza a memorable one. A round of applause also for the organising committee, led by Joseph Mizzi, and featuring Sandra Grech as a member. Stay tuned to this portal even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene.
Source: NET Television, escflashmalta.com
In the aftermath of “L-Għanja tal-Poplu – Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija”, the attention of the local music scene quickly turns to the “Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza”, another music competition which features original songs in Maltese, capping a successful series of months for our national language.
This year’s edition of the “Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza” will be returning back to it’s home-base on The Granaries in Floriana, noting that 12 months ago, the festival was staged at Pjazza Teatru Rjal in Valletta, something of a rare occasion.
23 entries will be sung on stage, but prior to that, there are still some eliminatory phases which need to be held, first starting off with the “Talent Żgħażugħ” category from which 3 songs will be chosen through a mixture of tele-voting (40%) and expert jury voting (60%). Those competing are as follows:
3 songs have also been shortlisted with the “Talent Stabbilit” category yet will be requiring the full support of the public at home, noting that during the second phase of the competition these songs originally ranked between 21st and 23rd. Those competing are as follows:
The rest of the field, therefore 20 in total features acts who have taken part in other national competitions such as the “Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza”, “L-Għanja tal-Poplu – Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija”, “Malta Eurovision Song Contest”, “Junior Eurovision Song Contest” and also “Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Jr”. Those competing are as follows:
On the right hand side to each competing entry, there is a number which duly corresponds to the televoting portion of the competition. In the “Talent Stabbilit”, the televoting winner is handed out as a seperate award, but the other sections have different rules and regulations as stated above. This year’s “Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza” will be taking place on Monday 19th September, and is organised under the auspices of Media.Link Communications. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.
Source: NET Television
Ira Losco, chosen by a panel of professional judges, as well as the general public as Malta’s representative at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016, has been the main recipient of the coverage encompass the international spectacle in the past couple of days and weeks. As the event nears closer, we are proud to continue a distinguished time honoured tradition in inviting a number of artists from the local music industry to share their views and opinions about the competing entries on each of the 3 evenings.
During the 1st semi-final, we are proud to welcome: Karen DeBattista, a finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2015 with “12, Baker Street”, written by Jan Van Dijck and Emil Calleja Bayliss and also winner of L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 with “Jien Ma Naħdimx”, written by Mark Scicluna and Rita Pace and Claudia Faniello, a two-time 1st runner-up in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, the first time being in 2008 with “Caravaggio”, a Ray Agius and Godwin Sant composition and the second time being in 2012 with “Pure”, written by Philip Vella and Gerard James Borg.
During the 2nd semi-final, we have enlisted the services of: Janice DeBattista, a finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2013 with “Perfect Day”, co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat as well as a lead vocalist in the Christian Rock Band, Salt and Brooke Borg, a female singer/songwriter whose return to Malta in the past couple of months saw her finish 2nd in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with “Golden”, a song co-written by Aidan O’Connor, Christian Schneider and Sara Biglert.
For the grand finale, we have enlisted two individuals who are larger than life. Julie Pomorski, a female singer/songwriter who reached the Malta Eurovision Song Contest stage back in 2007, apart from emerging triumphant in L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2005, and the Summer Hit Song Contest 2015 and Franklin Calleja, a 4-time Malta Eurovision Song Contest finalist who reached 3rd place earlier this year with the song “Little Love”, written by Cyprian Cassar and Matt ‘Muxu’ Mercieca.
Please note that the guest commentary will be taking place on the Official Facebook and Twitter Pages of escflashmalta.com on the 10th, 12th and 14th May 2016. We would like to take this opportunity to wish Ira Losco all the very best of luck in Stockholm whilst thank the special team of guest commentators for accepting their role.
"I would like to announce that I have not submitted any entries for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2016, focusing on my studies above anything else", announced Karen DeBattista through her official social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter.
Emerging on the local music scene as a finalist in the Summer Hit Song Contest 2011, the young versatile female vocalist made headlines winning L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 with "Jien Ma Naħdimx", an original song composed by Mark Scicluna with lyrics by Rita Pace. She quickly anticipated the possibility of partaking in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest and enlisted lyricist Emil Calleja Bayliss, and composer Jan Van Dijck to work on something different.
The result of this collaboration was "12, Baker Street", one of the songs which made it through to the final phase of the competition, eventually also making the iTunes chart. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about Malta's participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2016.
In 1956, following the aftermath of the Second World War, it was decided that a music competition was to be held, eyeing to strengthen the economy and lighten up the mood. It is quite remarkable, that the same competition, the Eurovision Song Contest is still running strong in 2015. In previous days, we featured Deo Grech, and his reviews, interviewed one of the acts, and also publishing any visual resources which our team is bound to produce.
With such a strong following in Malta, escflashmalta.com has enlisted the support of nine celebrities in Malta, all of whom are familiar faces in the music industry, who will help assess the quality of the songs, and also the vocalists, in what has been coined as an extremely interesting edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, full of emotion and quality.
During the first semi-final (19th May), the dubious honour will be given to; Lyndsay, a female singer/songwriter who has been through to the semi-final stage of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in 2015, apart from having countless hits on local airwaves, "Letter 25" and "Daphne"; Christabelle, a two-time participant in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest and most notably the first runner-up late in 2014 with the song "Rush". and finally, Marilena Gauci, a female vocalist who has also twice been to the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, and also being a former representative at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest.
During the second semi-final (21st May), the chosen celebrity bloggers include; Karen DeBattista, a female vocalist and winner of L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 with "Jien Ma Naħdimx" as well as to being a finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2015; Marie Claire Attard Bason, another female vocalist who has been a part of the local festival circuit for a couple of years, getting through to the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, L-Għanja tal-Poplu and the Summer Hit Song Contest on several occasions and Claudia Faniello, a female singer/songwriter, sister of two-time representative Fabrizio Faniello, and a two-time runner-up in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.
During the final night (23rd May), the dubious honour will be given to; Brooke Borg, a female singer/songwriter whose local radio releases have led to her being nominated for Best Single, and Best Solo Artist on countless occasions; Davinia, a female singer/songwriter who has taken part in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest on two occasions, even finishing in 3rd place back in 2013 with the song "Betrayed", and last but not least; Danica Muscat, an artist who kicked off her career in the Junior Eurosong, before reaching the Malta Eurovision Song Contest on at least 3 occasions.
All the LIVE blogging will be done through the Official Accounts on Facebook and Twitter, so whilst urging you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com as the main portal, we hope that you will follow our comments throughout the rest of the week, and also share your opinion on the songs competing in this year's edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, taking place in Vienna, Austria.
Il Volo, an operatic-pop trio, comprising of Piero Barone, Ignazio Boschetto, and Gianluca Ginoble have just been revealed as winners of the 2015 Sanremo. Their song entitled "Grande Amore", written by Francesco Boccia and Ciro Esposito managed to beat stiff competition from pre-competition favourite, Nek and his song "Fatti Avante Amore", written by Nek, Luca Chiaravalli, Andrea Bonomo and Luigi Fazio.
As a result of their overwhelming victory, with initial reports stating that they managed to win both the televoting and the professional jury, Il Volo will represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest. It is has also been confirmed that "Grande Amore" will be their entry, having also successfully international exposure, peaking at number #1 in Malta's Official iTunes Chart.
Once more, escflashmalta.com would like to thank a select number of people who offered their time to contribute as guest bloggers during the 2015 Sanremo including; Audrey Marie, Karen DeBattista, Andrew Zahra, Marilena Gauci and Brooke. We urge you to stay tuned for all the latest news about the 2015 Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna, Austria.
In 1951, following the aftermath of the Second World War, it was decided that a music competition was to be held, eyeing to strengthen the economy and lighten up the mood. It is quite remarkable, that the same competition, Sanremo, is still running strong in 2015. During the course of the next 5 days, Italy will not only be showcasing the best their local music scene is known to offer, but will also provide lots of entertainment, even courtesy of foreign guests.
With such a strong following in Malta, escflashmalta.com has enlisted the support of five celebrities in Malta, all of whom are familiar faces in the music industry, who will help assess the quality of the songs, and also the vocalists, in what has been coined the most reputable line-up for the Sanremo Music Festival in years.
During the first night (10th February), the dubious honour will be given to Audrey Marie Bartolo, a female vocalist from Gozo, who has made it through to the finals of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, L-Għanja tal-Poplu and the Summer Hit Song Contest on multiple occasions, whilst also having had the opportunity to participate in the Malta Eurosong competition back in 2010 with “Good Intentions” written by Rita Pace and Miriam Christine.
During the second night (11th February), the chosen celebrity blogger is Karen DeBattista, another female vocalist, who requires no introduction, having been a finalist in the Summer Hit Song Contest, the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza and the latest esition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with the song “12, Baker Street”. She gained fame and credibility for her triumph in the 2014 L-Għanja tal-Poplu with the song “Jien Ma Naħdimx” written by Mark Scicluna and Rita Pace. She is a signatoree of Ironic PR & Artist Management.
During the third night (12th February), our special guest will be none other than male songwriter, Andrew Zahra, whose songwriting credits include “Fomm il-Vjolin”, winning entry of the International Festival of Maltese Song in 2001, “L-Arka tal-Liberta” winning entry of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza 2004 and “Stejjer”, a fan-favourite entry during the International Festival of Maltese Song in 2013, amongst others.
During the fourth night (13th February), the tapped special guest will be none other than Marilena Gauci, a female vocalist whose first ascent to fame came back in 2004, when she represented Malta at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest as part of the Young Talent Team. Since then, she has made it through to the final of the Summer Hit Song Contest on multiple occasions, as well as reaching the first runner-up slot at the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza twice, and also reaching the final stages of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest twice. She is a signatoree of Ironic PR & Artist Management.
During the fifth and final night (14th February), Editor-In-Chief Marc Calleja Bayliss, and special guest blogger, Brooke. The female singer/songwriter whose hit songs include “Fairytale”, “Bingo”, “Young and Free” and “Love Not War” is currently based in the United Kingdom, but has always made positive headlines in Malta, especially having been recognised by both the Bay Music Awards and the Malta Music Awards, on multiple occasions.
Annalisa Scarrone - Una finestra fra le stelle
Malika Ayane - Adesso e qui
Marco Masini - Che giorno è
Chiara Galiazzo - Straordinario
Gianluca Grignani - Sogni infranti
Nek - Fatti avanti amore
Nina Zilli - Sola
Dear Jack - Il mondo explode
Alex Britti - Un attimo importante
Biggio & Mandelli (I soliti Idioti) - Vita d'inferno
Moreno - Oggi ti parlo cosi
Bianca Atzei - Il solo al mondo
Raf - Come una favola
Lara Fabian - Voce
Grazia Di Michele & Platinette (Mauro Coruzzi) - Io sono una finestra
Il Volo - Grande amore
Anna Tatangelo - Libera
Nesli - Buona fortuna amore
Irene Grandi - Un vento senza nome
Lorenzo Fragola - Siamo Uguali
Serena Brancale - Galleggiare
Giovanni Caccamo - Ritornerò da te
Kaligola - Oltre il giardino
KuTso - Elisa
Enrico Nigiotti - Qualcosa da decidere
Rakele - Io non lo so cos'è l'amore
Amara - Credo
Chanty - Ritornerai
All the LIVE blogging will be done through the Official Accounts on Facebook and Twitter, so whilst urging you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com as the main portal, we hope that you will follow our comments throughout the rest of the week, and also share your opinion on the songs competing in Sanremo. The winner of the ‘Campioni’ will also have the first right of refusal to represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest 2015.
Every year brings with it a number of events, festivals and lots of new material that many appreciate and play over and over throughout the year. The editorial board of escflashmalta.com decided to have a look back at the main highlights of 2014, the year that saw two Malta Eurovision Song Contest competitions, the annual competition l-Għanja Tal-Poplu and Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, the return of the Summer Hit Song Contest and also the Junior Eurovision Song Contest taking place in Malta. There were quite a number of events that kept our site busy and also our readers on the lookout for the next event.
The year started off with Firelight emerging victorious at the Malta Eurovision with their song ‘Coming Home’, the band came together for the Eurovision Song Contest but looked beyond the festival. The Micallef siblings came together along with their friends and gave us the country folk pop entry. One would not say it was a shocking win because some critics did tip the song on doing well, but surely surprised a number when it emerged victorious over public favourites Jessika, Daniel Testa & De Bee. The band managed to reach the finals of the Eurovision Song Contest in May and Richard Edwards’ composition received good airplay in a number of countries in Europe. This kicked started their career with new material being released recently and a number of gigs in Germany.
After the Malta Eurovision, it was time for the scene to focus on a local festival in Maltese. A festival that has been going for a number of years and has a good following thanks to the importance it gives to the themes of the songs. The outright winner of the festival was the song ‘Jien Ma Naħdimx’ interpreted by the relative newcomer Karen DeBattista. Mark Scicluna & Rita Pace’s composition was a hit from the get go and after it won the song received substantial airplay on a number of radiostations. The powerful lyrics were surely the reason behind its success; the message portrayed in the lyrics shows the work done by housewives which is normally not appreciated by the other members of the family. It was surely the stepping stone for Karen DeBattista who was participating only in her third festival in three years and after this success she also managed to reach the finals of the Malta Eurovision with ’12, Baker Street’.
The much awaited return of the Summer Hit Song Contest was imminent and many were happy to see that this festival was finally back, after a break of nearly three years. The winner of this edition was Domenique who although still relatively young, she has cemented herself as one of the established artists in the local music scene. Domenique always expressed her love towards festivals and is a popular face in a number of local competitions in Malta. ‘Back to...’ a composition by Mark Scicluna & Emil Calleja Bayliss managed to scoop the top prize in this festival and many commented that Domenique’s strong interpretation thanks to her experience in these competitions was vital in this win. The song was always seen as a strong entry but many saw it as a contender after the stunning celebrity duet Domenique delivered alongside Rosman Pace – a unique factor to this competition.
The annual Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza saw an influx of songs related to the fifty year anniversary of Malta’s independence and even though competing authors were free to write on different subjects, this one proved to be the most popular. The result was surely unexpected as the song which was highly tipped on winning the competition finished in fourth place whilst the young and upcoming star Michela Galea won the judges hearts with her rendition of ‘Mixja Li Bdiet’ a subtle song that speaks about the stages Malta has been through since its independence fifty years ago. Renato Briffa & Alfred E. Baldacchino surely did their homework right as they write a catchy tune, with subtle lyrics that embrace the country’s vision of independence and gave it to an apt, fresh and confident performer who delivered the song strongly. It was a well deserved win for the teenager who won the first festival in her first major competition.
Two other winners who emerged in the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza were Kurt Cassar who won the New Talent Section and Kayley Cuschieri who triumphed in the inaugural edition of Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza Junior. Kurt Cassar reached the finals of the prestigious event and went on to win his section with the song ‘Inservi’, a composition of Elton Zarb, Gillian Attard & Emil Calleja Bayliss. The song was well received from the start and many saw it as a potential winner as the whole package stood out from the rest of the field. This surely opened the horizons for Cassar. On the other hand, Kayley Cushcieri is a known face in the music circles but she surely left a lasting impression when she triumphed with the song ‘Għannaqni’ - an emotional heartfelt song that speaks about a daughter begging her mother to hug her instead of abusing her; another strong message written by Rita Pace to Mark Spiteri Lucas’ composition.
The biggest highlight this year for the local industry has definitely been the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. The event was the biggest live broadcast the national broadcaster has put up and Malta was represented by the talented soprano Federica Falzon who rose to fame after winning the popular Italian show ‘Ti Lascio una Canzone’. Federica Falzon had the opportunity of a lifetime performing at such a esteemed event in front of her home crowd and she surely made the most of it as she delivered an excellent performance of 'Diamonds' finishing in a prestigious fourth on the night. Many local fans though would love to see the return of the pre-selection show for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest as this would involve the audience at home choosing their junior representative and also be the perfect showcase for up and coming talent – something which sadly is not given as much prominence as it should.
Given that Malta was hosting the Junior Eurovision, it came to no surprise that the PBS announced that the Malta Eurovision will be brought forward this year. It caught the singers and songwriters a bit off guard and this showed in the number of submitted entries but many critics argued that the quality of songs in the finals was the best it has ever been. Although a tough competition, Amber emerged as the clear front runner and after two strong performances on both Friday and Saturday night it was a unanimous decision by the judges and the public vote that she should be the next Maltese representative at the Eurovision Song Contest. She conquered the festival with Elton Zarb & Muxu’s composition ‘Warrior’ which so far has been well received from abroad. The song is expected to be enhanced and many are looking forward to hear the finalised version of the next Maltese representative.
After all that one can realize that it has been quite a year and if one would think that everyone is currently taking a break, one would be mistaken as in November the committee of L-Għanja Tal-Poplu issued its regulations so the year will be once again kickstarting very soon although the first major festival of 2015 is expected in March and not in February like last year. This is due to having the Malta Eurovision a few months earlier. A festival many would love to see its return would definitely be the ‘Festival Internazzjonali Tal-Kanzunetta Maltija’ which saw its return in 2013 but seems that it was put aside for 2014 because of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. A real pity because it gave light to a number of new Maltese songs in the last edition these include Olivia Lewis’ winning entry ‘Hawn Mill-Ġdid’, Mark Tonna’s ‘Poeta Bla Kliem and Dario & Grecia’s ‘Solitaire’. Maybe 2015 would be a year were one gets to celebrate through more competitions and more songs to feast the keen Maltese music lover.
On behalf of the editorial team of escflashmalta.com, I would like to wish you a Happy New Year filled with joy, health and success in whatever your heart desires. We urge you to keep following escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene in 2015. All the best.
'The Celebrity Night' is a weekly television programme which has become somewhat synonymous with Saturday evening, is broadcast on F Living Channel. The series which officially kicked off at the beginning of October revolves around the one-to-one interviews, which speak of class, decadence and wit, and have become synonymous with Deo Grech's presenting style.
Karen DeBattista, a female vocalist, who gained recognition following her triumphant victory at L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2014 with "Jien Ma Naħdimx", written by Mark Scicluna and Rita Pace, is somewhat having a stellar, having recently been in the finals of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, with the unique "12, Baker Street", written by Jan Van Dijck and Emil Calleja Bayliss.
Whilst being the most recognisable guest in this week's episode, she will be joined by another two personalities; Raquel who also happens to be another female vocalist, and a two time semi-finalist in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, with tracks "Invisible" written by Philip Vella and Gerard James Borg as well as "Stop Haunting Me" written by Elton Zarb and Muxu and Pearl Haber, who will represent Malta in the upcoming Miss World competition.
This and much more during this week's episode of 'The Celebrity Night' which airs on Saturday night at 20:30 on F Living Channel. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news about the local music scene.
Source: F Living
Since 2011, all songs competing in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, have not been published through a compilation album, as previously done, and therefore a number of record labels such as CAP-Sounds stepped in, releasing a number of songs on digital platforms such as; iTunes, Deezer, Amazon and Spotify for the general public to purchase or stream.
"12, Baker Street" written by Jan Van Dijck and Emil Calleja Bayliss, and, "Close Your Eyes" written by Elton Zarb and Emil Calleja Bayliss, performed by Karen DeBattista and Danica Muscat are the latest songs which have been released through the German based company, CAP-Sounds, who have a distribution deal in place with Universal Music Germany.
"Still Here" written by Alexander Rybak, "Chasing a Dream" written by Paul Abela and Joe Julian Farrugia as well as "Something in the Way" written by Mans Ek and Charlie Mason, "Rush" written by Elton Zarb and Matthew Mercieca, performed by Franklin Calleja, Trilogy, Daniel Testa and Christabelle were published days following the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.
Three of the aforementioned songs have managed to peak at number #2 or better, signally the intent of the public in purchasing the most successful songs from the competition. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.
Source: CAP-Sounds, iCAM Photography