July 22, 2019

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Wednesday, 11 November 2015 19:39

MESC 2016: Claudia Faniello Denies Rumours

"I decided not to go for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest this time around, focusing on myself and new material, as part of a larger collection", echoed Claudia Faniello to the editorial team of escflashmalta.com, amidst growing rumours that she was eyeing a comeback.

Claudia Faniello first emerged onto the local music scene with "High Alert", an original song which got through to the final stages of the Malta Song for Europe 2006 with the vocals of Olivia Lewis, who had to interpret another song, "Spare a Moment", having obtained more points. As a result, the renowned songwriter chose the younger of the Faniello siblings, and from then onwards, she has gone from strength to strength.

Finishing as the first runner-up in 2008 with "Caravaggio",  composed by Ray Agius with lyrics by Godwin Sant, and in 2012 with "Pure", composed by Philip Vella with lyrics by Gerard James Borg, Claudia has cemented her place as the most successful female artist in the national selection not to win the competition. Her last participation came in 2013, with "When It's Time", which the singer/songwriter penned to the music of Errol Sammut. 

Since then, she has focused on developing her own genre, working on a further two singles; "One Fine Day" and "Miles Away", with a third one in tow. 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.

Source: escflashmalta.com, Claudia Faniello

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGzepxLyGTg

It has been 48 hours since the sun set on the 24th edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, and the 1st to take place at Pjazza Teatru Rjal in Valletta as part of the celebrations encompassing Independence Day in Malta. At the end of the evening, following the performance of 23 participating entries; 20 pre-qualified in the 'Talent Stabbilit' and another 3 which came through 'Talent Ġdid', the winner was revealed to be "Kuraġġ", performed by singer/songwriter Analise Mifsud.

Hosted by Peter Carbonaro, Claire Preca Taroum, and Christine Haber, this year's edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, which was aired on NET Television, was given a brand new image, one which was very well appreciated by the competing artists, and their respective songwriters. With no major technical issues, most performances ran smoothly. This year, the list of participating artists was a good mixture of newcomers and veterans.

The professional members of the jury made up of; Larissa Bonaci, Joseph Mizzi, Marbeck Spiteri, Christabelle Borg, Paul Testa, Indri Attard, Felix Busuttil, and Andrea Cassar had an extremely difficult job to do, noting that this year's edition of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza was noted down to be one of the most promising in years, with several potential candidates for the top trophy. A list of the results can be viewed below.

Best Young Talent: "Għandi Ħolma" (Mark Spiteri Lucas / Francesco Pio Attard) - Mikaela Bajada

Televoting Award: "Fis-Seba' Sema" (Cyprian Cassar / Rita Pace) - Nicole Borg

3rd Place: "Dment li Malti Ħaj" (Ray Agius / Dario Bezzina) - Dario Bezzina

2nd Place: "Ma Ninsa Qatt" (Dominic Cini / Rita Pace) - Dorcas Debono

1st Place: "Kuraġġ" (Analise Mifsud) - Analise Mifsud

On behalf of the editorial team at escflashmalta.com, we would like to congratulate the winners circle, as well as the other 18 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 Charles Stroud, and featuring Sandra Grech and Clarissa Ellul as members. 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

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlhcXrcxzgg

“Drop in number of Eurovision entries” is the name of an article that appeared in The Times of Malta earlier today, with direct reference to the fact that there was a fewer turnout that usual in the number of submissions that the Public Broadcasting Services revealed. escflashmalta.com made this quite clear in a subtle manner when confirming a host of names, both of vocalists and songwriters who did not put their first foot forward.

These included none other than; Sophie DeBattista, Davinia, Claudia Faniello, Ruth Portelli, De Bee, Pamela, Ray Agius, Alfred C Sant, Paul Giordimaina and Fleur Balzan. Nevertheless though, despite the drop in artists, Anton Attard, Head of Delegation on behalf of the Public Broadcasting Services confirmed to the leading local newspaper that the issue more or less deals with repeat submissions, songs that have been submit every year with the hope that they get through.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUOi3p73HpI

Whilst song submissions do eventually get through, others do not and if one looks at the shortlist of the past three to four years, some songs would always be recognizable. Artists whom escflashmalta.com can confirm to have submit to the 2015 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest include none other than; Domenique, Franklin Calleja, Izzy, Jessika, Kaya, Romina Mamo, Daniel Testa, Fabrizio Faniello, Dayle Camilleri and Ryan Paul Abela.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qqYOo_Hibs

Speculation on Ira Losco is continuing to mount and with Moira Delia landing the top job of hosting the upcoming edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, the news is only but confirmed. Her name among those shortlisted later on this month will definitely be the worst kept secret in recent years. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook & Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: Times of Malta, escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJSkfmXGIG4

Published in Local Music News

Ray Agius & Alfred C Sant, veteran songwriters whose reputation garnered repute throughout the past three decades after being responsible for some of the most iconic tracks ever to be written, including Malta's entry in the 1995 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest; "Keep Me In Mind" have been in touch with the editorial team at escflashmalta.com announcing that they have not submit any entries for the 2015 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, both as a duo and individually.

Having always been a force to be reckoned with, their presence in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest will surely be noted with their most recent success stories being; "Let Your Heart Talk" by Franklin and "Answer With Your Eyes" by Amber. It is worth keeping in mind that Ray Agius & Alfred C Sant went to the Eurovision Song Contest on another occasion, in 1996 with 'In a Woman's Heart' and in 1997 with "Let Me Fly". All their results saw Malta rank in the top ten. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even through Facebook & Twitter for all the latest news about the 2015 edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest.

Source: escflashmalta.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTstdRSgRZ0

Published in Local Music News

Ray Agius, one of the most distinguished songwriters in the local music industry has long worked with author Alfred C Sant creating some of the most beautiful and iconic tracks including the nations' entry at the 1995 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, that entitled Keep Me In Mind with vocals provided by Mike Spiteri. The veteran male vocalist never shied away from a challenge and as a matter of fact, decided to use his experience in the industry to help the nations' participation within the Pan-European event on a couple of years. One of his most recent original songs is the one entitled All I'm After Is You written by his longtime collaborators.

Last week, Mike Spiteri as a recent winner of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza with the track B'Rieda tal-Azzar composed by Ray Agius to the lyrics of Alfred C Sant was invited on the programme Indifest hosted by Mark Azzopardi and Christine Haber as a special guest. The male singer also tried to return to the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2010 by submitting the song Twenty Thousand Leagues failing to get through to the final stage of the competition. Mike Spiteri is a true veteran and is considered as one of the leading figures in the industry due to his husky voice which would not be out of place within either a rock band or the Italian music industry. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all of the latest news.

Source: Indifest

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDlah_fwuEE

Published in Local Music News

The editorial team of escflashmalta.com is proud to announce the return of the Festival Internazzjonali tal-Kanzunetta Maltija which had officially been suspended in 2002 with the last winning entry being Eklissi composed by Philip Vella to the lyrics of Ray Agius. The void of a local competition in which entries are performed in Maltese has been felt on several occasions with only the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, organised by Media.Link Communications under the hospice of a political party and traditional-folk inspired L-Għanja tal-Poplu carrying on in recent years. 

Robert Cefai, a former Chairman of the board responsible for Malta's participation within the Eurovision Song Contest and currently the Secretary General of the World Association of Festivals and Artists seems to be a key figure behind the comeback, as he is the one to have made the announcement on his personal page on Facebook. The first official meeting for songwriters, artists and the media will be taking place on the 24th July 2013 at the Isouard Hall found within the Manoel Theatre in Valletta. The committee behind the competition will be revealing the regulations as well as other important details about the return of this prestigious competition which will be focusing on the promotion of Maltese through the medium of song.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWd56EctJEA

escflashmalta.com will be covering the Festival Internazzjonali tal-Kanzunetta Maltija having been the only editorial outlet to hark about the return of this competition in the past three to four years. The final edition in 2002 also boasted first runners-up; Julie & Ludwig with the track Adagio composed by Rene Mamo to the lyrics of Ray Mahoney and second runner-up; Olivia Lewis with the song Ħolm u Realtà composed by Paul Giordimaina to the lyrics of Fleur Balzan. The editorial team of escflashmalta.com would like to thank the organisers for their quick reply to the enquiries made in recent hours whilst urging our readers to stay tuned for all of the latest news.

Source: Robert Cefai (Organising Committee)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuS4sGpsP0Y

Published in Local Music News

In the next couple of weeks, more interviews will be appearing during the week as the editorial team at escflashmalta.com has been in touch with the committee of the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza securing a talk with all of the twenty-finalists in the established category. Nevertheless, as those plans commence, the original summer series of interviews continues today with none other than Amber, a three time finalist at the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, a backing vocalist for Malta at the Pan-European competition as well as a guest performer with a number of artists, she is one of the fastest rising stars in the local music scene.

At just eighteen years of age, you reached the finals of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest for the very first time with the track Catch 22 composed by Ray Agius to the lyrics of Godwin Sant. Whilst the final result was somewhat dull in comparison to the whole experience, you managed to pick up a signifant tele-vote, faring higher than a number of established performers including; Wayne Micallef, Claudia Faniello and Ally amongst others.  Ultimately, what did it mean to you to succeed in making it through to the final, and when there, how did it feel to be appreciated by the public?

It was a surprise to find myself competing with 2 songs during the malta eurovision considering the fact that this was my first appearance as a eurovsion participant. Making it through to the final was a big achievement for me as I was a new comer to the eurovision at that time. I felt honoured that people had believed in me and in my song.

You have already participated in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest on three occasions, achieving your best result to date in 2012 when the track Answers With Your Eyes composed by Ray Agius and penned by Godwin Sant finished in third place with only points achieved by the mixture of local and foreign juries. You were not far off in 2013 as the song In Control composed by Paul Giodimaina with lyrics by Fleur Balzan finished in fourth place. The genres of both entries were remarkably different from each other yet you performed them with relative ease. Which one of the two do you cite as your favourite and why?

I believe that I cannot compare these 2 entries as they were perferomed in different times during my life and apart from the different genres they also have a different message. Answer with your eyes is all about passion, love and betrayal whilst in control is all about being dominant and independent.As a performer I always study each and every song intensly and try to deliver the message behind the song. Therefore I do not believe that I have any preferences. However I enjoyed performing both songs to the full.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTstdRSgRZ0

On more than one occasion, you have been the subject of severe criticism, kicking off with the appointment of backing vocalist to This Is The Night performed by Kurt Calleja at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2012 to the release of an article published the official website of the Pan-European competition saying that you were supposedly the winner of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest with the track In Control. It is important to denote that you handles both events in the best possible manner, giving the public a response which was honest and clear but nevertheless, from your own personal perspective, have such issues made you a stronger individual?

I believe that I can learn from each and every experience whether it is a good or a bad experience.  The general public has a right for the truth.  However it might not always be easy when giving an explanation as unfortunately there will still be a minority to prefer to interpret the situation in their own way. Luckily such situations have thought me that “what doesn't kill you makes you stronger”. As a performer I have learnt that these are difficult and challenging situations that I have to come across during my career, from which I always learn and look ahead.

In 2012, following your participation as a backing vocalist during the Eurovision Song Contest, you returned to another astonishing opportunity, and that was to perform with Joseph Calleja, an internationally renowned opera singer whose affiliation to the international showcase was introducing the country during the postcard preceding Glen Vella’s performance of One Life back in 2011. During the summer concert which also featured Ronan Keating and Lucio Dalla, you had the opportunity to sing the song A Thousand Years originally by Christina Perri. Why was that specific track selected and would you have done anything differently or do you believe the setup was just right?

Perfroimng with Joseph Calleja was simply perfect and I would definately leave the same set up if I had to to it all over again. It was a dream come true and I still cannot believe that I was given the opportunity to perform with such a prominant and humble artist. We had chosen the song a thousand years together after we had short listed our options. We had finalised our decision to this song as it had quite a powerful message behind it and it suited both our voices.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3GhhlQ5QtE0

In 2010, you entered the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza for the very first time, making it through to the second phase with no less than two songs, out of which one was selected to get through to the final, that entitled Trid Taprezza composed by Ray Agius and penned by Alfred C Sant. This was your second major local festival having also participated in the Malta Hit Song Contest earlier that year with the track Take It Easy written by the same team of songwriters, finishing in fourth place. Nevertheless you managed to improve this time round coming out as a winner after a tight competition, finishing just ahead of Gloriana Arpa Belli. What does the year 2010 stand for in your mind and what is your perception on local competitions?

2010 was a total turning point in my career.  Both festivals have not only given me a boost but they have also given my name a recognition and also gave me a clear picture of what i wanted to establish in my career. Our islands inhibt people with talent. I believe that professional local competition will show case various talents and  not only provide the artists with exposure but also with experience.

escflashmalta.com had the pleasure of being the first to publish the video to the track So Good written and performed by Matt Mercieca (Muxu) but nevertheless, you feature heavily in various parts, predominantly within the chorus. The track, a mixture of pop and r’n’b is somewhat well suited to your vocals as attributed by general comments of readers of our portal as well as comments on viral website, YouTube. What could you tell us about the collaboration and would you consider working together once more, maybe even for the Eurovision Song Contest, following his success with Davinia and her track Betrayed earlier this year?

Working with Muxu is always a fun and remarkable experience. He is a very talented artist with fresh and unique ideas.When working with Muxu I can give my own interpretation to the song and he even considers my own ideas. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwXCk0cjyio

During last years’ edition of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, your third place result was attributed thanks to the support of juries, as the public failed to award you any points unfortunately. We have recently spoken in favour of the professional jury panel for selecting Tomorrow co-written by Boris Cezek and Dean Muscat with vocals by Gianluca to represent Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest, having obtained the nations’ best result since 2005. Do you believe that the public are still entitled to have a say in the final result or do you think that the jury should make the decision?

Although during my last year's participation I did not receive any public votes I still fully agree that the general public together with the jury deserve a say in the final result. After all the winner will be representing the country and its citizens. 

Would you like to say anything to our readers at escflashmalta.com

I would like to thank the readers for their constant support throughout my career.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WGv0lBPkto

Published in Interviews

Maestro Ray Agius is one of the most talented songwriters in the local music industry noting that some of his work has represented the country in foreign waters, including Keep Me In Mind performed by Mike Spiteri which achieved tenth place back in 1995 as well as Let Me Fly which was sung by Debbie Scerri landing ninth place back in 1997. He is also the most successful songwriter in the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza having penned a total of six winning entries, the last of which being B'Rieda tal-Azzar performed by Mike Spiteri in 2011. At the moment, his latest project is composing the music to the lyrics of Michael Vella Haber and Evelyn Saliba la Rosa for the series D.R.E.A.M.S which airs every Wednesday on Television Malta at 20:45 CET. escflashmalta.com has always been proud to support this project due to the fact that it gives space to the younger generation of performers. This evening will mark the twenty-ninth (29th) episode of the series are the recent developments in storylines continue to develop and evolve accordingly.

Alex (Luke Brincat) seems to be the focal point of the story at the moment especially after the revelation that he comes from a long line of royal descendants. Jade (Rachel Genovese), Katia (Jade Cini) and Andre' (Jervis Galea) were the last to see him as they were having a double date in a restaurant. Unfortunately, the thugs that want to see the dynasty dead including Francalanza (Joe Tanti) managed to force his mother, Gina (Jospehine Fuller) to get him into the car with them. His location is still unknown but nevertheless, the audience knows that thus far, he is still alive. As his parents are re-united in this upcoming episode, they receive a mysterious package, and with caution, they have to vet the package. In the meantime, Katie and Jade are still trying to grasp the whole situation and thus snoop around ever so slightly to try and understand better.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ex6i4oiuKYg

Two weeks ago, Antoinette (Annalise Psaila) was visited by a talent scout (Dominic Cini) in order to try and lure her to the United States of America where there she would be studying to improve her voice and use it in the best possible manner. She has yet to tell her parents about the opportunity that has been granted to her but nevertheless approaches her mother, Theresa (Shirley Blake). Could it be the reaction expected by Antoinette or will everything go swiftly? On the other hand, Hilda (Evelyn Saliba La Rosa) goes to see her sister in jail to speak of the progress being done with regards to her fellow inmates problems. Elaine (Graziella Zammit), Janet (Donnah Busuttil), Patsy (Analise Mifsud) and Maria (Marie-Claire Sammut) all seem to be entangled in a web, possibly of romance but nevertheless, more problems seem to evolve rather than be solved in this particular situation. Stay tuned for this and more on this evenings' episode of D.R.E.A.M.S. kicking off at around 20:45 CET. 

Source: Rewind Productions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4i0FyWadkKs

Published in Local Music News
Wednesday, 12 June 2013 17:28

Malta: Tonight Marks More Sneaking Around

Maestro Ray Agius is one of the most formidable songwriters in the local music industry having won the Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza a record six times, the last of which coming in 2011 when he had written both the music and lyrics to the track B'Rieda Tal-Azzar. Amongst his most well known numbers, there are definitely Fjura Fil-Kantina, Fejn Tħobb il-Qalb, Let Me Fly and Keep Me In Mind, the latter two performed by Debbie Scerri and Mike Spiteri on behalf of Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest. At the moment, his latest project is composing the music to the lyrics of Michael Vella Haber and Evelyn Saliba la Rosa for the series D.R.E.A.M.S which airs every Wednesday on Television Malta at 20:45 CET. escflashmalta.com has always been proud to support this project due to the fact that it gives space to the younger generation of performers. This evening will mark the twenty-eighth (28th) episode of the series are the recent developments in storylines continue to develop and evolve accordingly.

Alex (Luke Brincat) was kidnapped two weeks ago whilst on a double date with Jade (Rachel Genovese), Andre (Jervis Galea) and Katia (Jade Cini). Mr.Francalanza (Joe Tanti) seems to have been the one who ordered the kidnapping in the first place and that is why he questioned the knowledge in relation to the Romanovs. For those who might require a quick history lesson, the family was responsible for ruling over Russia prior to 1917. The whole situation has been rather shady at best but nevertheless, the audience has been given a vibe about the whereabouts in terms of background where Alex and his family are concerned. Jade calls Andrè who assures her that everything is fine but nevertheless, her gut feeling is telling her otherwise considering that he did not turn up to school and is not answering his phone. Flavia (Evelyn Saliba La Rosa) is working hard to try and clear Frances (Sabina Attard) of the wrongdoing which she had supposedly committed. Of course, in order to do this, she has to break into the office of Pamela (Lara Cushcieri).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17ciGG-NY30

Flavia has suggested a number of changes within the office but Pamela might prove to be wary especially if she suspects any wrongdoing involved. Jeremy (Mikhail Attard) and Karen (Lara Dimech) will be waiting for Diane (Michela Galea) to appear at school in order to have a proper chat with her with regards to the history of their mother with her father considering that Karen and Diane are practically half-sisters. On school premises, Damian (Andre' Mangion) makes an unexpected appearance in order to speak to Antoinette (Annalise Psaila) and the conversation might be slightly heated. The focus will definitely remain on Alex this evening though and as matter of fact, the kidnappers will be seen in a different light as the past is uncovered. Trouble seems to follow in every corner as a matter of fact and that is why, we urge readers of escflashmalta.com to switch on to Television Malta this evening at 20:45 CET for another episode of the hit series D.R.E.A.M.S.

Source: Rewind Productions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHFpoR3gdS8

Published in Local Music News
Wednesday, 05 June 2013 13:40

Malta: Nail Biting Episode This Evening

Maestro Ray Agius has long been associated with writing both music and lyrics to some of the leading artists in the local music industry and therefore it comes as no surprise to denote that he has written some of the most notable tracks to have ever graced the scene, both in Maltese and English respectively. Amongst his most well known numbers, there are definitely Fjura Fil-Kantina, Fejn Tħobb il-Qalb, Let Me Fly and Keep Me In Mind. At the moment, his latest project is composing the music to the lyrics of Michael Vella Haber and Evelyn Saliba la Rosa for the series D.R.E.A.M.S which airs every Wednesday on Television Malta at 20:45 CET. escflashmalta.com has always been proud to support this project due to the fact that it gives space to the younger generation of performers. This evening will mark the twenty-seventh (27th) episode of the series are the recent developments in storylines continue to develop and evolve accordingly. 

The staff at the sixth form is getting feisty noting that the relationship between Jessica (Marie Louise Wiffen) and Peter (JJ Curmi) has come to a standstill over a set of photographs brought forward by Greta (Stephanie Vella). At this point, it seems that Jessica is yet to view the photos which she had picked up from the dustbin after being torn apart by Peter but nevertheless, the fact that they both went back for them has to prove suspicious. Nevertheless, attention is surely on the double date between Andre (Jervis Galea), Katia (Jade Cini), Alex (Luke Brincat) and Jade (Rachel Genovese). Alex had supposedly went outside to meet with his father, a story which is somewhat shady but he was kidnapped or so it seems as his mother, Gina (Josephine Fuller) was held at gunpoint. Jade decides to go looking for Alex when he does not show up back to the table and then has to alert her friends when he is nowhere to be found. 

Andre is seemingly worried about what could have happened to Alex and does not know what he should do next especially because he had no clue to the dynamics of the situation. In the meantime though, the viewers will be treated to the aftermath of the situation, hoping that both Alex and Gina are well and alive. Moving away from this situation and back to Antoinette (Annalise Psaila), she decides to open up about her relationship with Brandon (Jean Pierre Cassar) to Melanie (Carly Zarb) whilst Damian (Andre’ Mangion) speaks to his brother about another issue. The conversations will be yielding some intriguing results but that is why we ask you to turn on your television sets and watch this evenings' episode. One last storyline is the one featuring Paul (Kevin de Leonardo) and his daughter Diane (Michela Galea), the history that seems to be unravelling quickly. Tonight at 20:45, another episode of D.R.E.A.M.S only on Television Malta. 

Source: Rewind Productions

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yp9m5On9Zpc

Published in Local Music News
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