February 19, 2020

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Coming Home, written by Richard Edwards Micallef and performed by the group Firelight, on behalf of Malta at this year's edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, might have not lit up the scoreboard on Saturday evening but still managed to garner a considerable following for people to go to iTunes and purchase the song. The group, who have been busy recording their debut album, out soon, have just entered the first official music chart in their career, that being the one in Ireland.

According to the Irish Recorded Music Association, which counts both physical and digital sales in Ireland, Coming Home by Firelight is a new entry at #93, further signifying that the 3 points achieved from the Emerald Isle on the night of the final were not a fluke. It is also worth noting that considerable digital sales for Firelight were recorded in Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom although their final chart positions will only be revealed in a couple of days time. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: IRMA


Firelight made up of; Richard Edwards Micallef, Michelle Mifsud, Daniel Micallef, Wayne Micallef, Leslie Decesare and Tony Polidano were first to take to the stage this afternoon as a full run through of the second semi-final took place at the B&W Hallerne in Copenhagen, Denmark. Coming Home is being touted as the dark horse by all the media present for this year's edition of the Eurovision Song Contest and that fills the escflashmalta.com editorial team with courage as the semi-final looms closer and close with each passing day.

According to our team in Copenhagen, the vocals were strong, the camera work was flawless and the feel good factor was there more than ever. Remember that Malta will be opening the second semi-final on Thursday 8th May, followed by no less than fourteen countries, including fan-favourite Norway. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest updates as soon as they become available. A quick reminder that LIVE blogging will be taking place through the social media channels of this portal throughout both the semi-finals and the final set for the 6th, 8th and 10th May 2014.

Source: eurovision.tv


Coming Home, written by Richard Edwards Micallef, and performed by the group Firelight was rehearsed for the very first time on the B&W Hallerne stage in Copenhagen, capital city of Denmark and home to the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. The first rehearsal was extremely positive with the press branding the entry as a possible contender to triumph during the second semi-final. This does indeed come to terms with the fact that professional personnel have been branding our entry as a potential dark horse of tis competition.

To give you a better outlook on what to expect during the performance, the group are set in the middle of the stage but not too far back, hoping to interact with the audience better. They are smiling throughout the performance and have perfect control on their vocal range and capabilities having been mastered correctly by Pamela in the weeks leading up to the competition. In the meantime, the backdrop is seemingly a poppy theme as seen during the music video before evolving into a multitude of selfies depicting what seems to be a very warm and friendly entry. Malta will perform first in the second semi-final and will thus kick off the show in a positive light. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com even on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest news.

Source: escflashmalta.com, eurovision.tv


In just a couple of hours; Richard Edwards, Michelle Mifsud, Wayne William, Daniel Micallef, Tony Polidano and Leslie Decesare, cumulatively known as Firelight will depart to Copenhagen, Denmark where they will be representing Malta in the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Coming Home written by frontman Richard Edwards Micallef. Prior to that though, they will be giving a final interview to Frederick Zammit on Radju Malta 2 (105.9 FM) between nine and ten o'clock in the morning.

On Tuesday, Firelight are expected to take to the stage for their first technical run, and might we remind you that the group will be opening the second semi-final on Thursday 8th May as they have been allocated to perform in the first slot. Ten of the fifteen entries will get through the semi-final stage in order to take part in the final on the 10th May. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com (Facebook, Twitter) in the coming days for all the latest news about Malta's participation in the international competition.

Source: Radju Malta 2


Thursday, 24 April 2014 13:00

Malta: Firelight Drumming Up OGAE Support

It is only a matter of days now before Firelight jet off to Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark in order to represent Malta in the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Coming Home written by front-man Richard Edwards Micallef. Fans across Europe have been selecting their favourites for this years' international extravaganza by casting their vote in their respective branch of the OGAE Network, one in which Malta has not performed well in recent years, even though the actual results would then turn out to be different.

In just a couple of hours though, Malta was awarded with 9 points from two different branches, the first one being in Luxembourg where the Mediterranean nation has always performed well and the second one being that in Ireland which bodes well for the coming weeks considering that the Emerald Isle will be competing alongside Malta in the semi-final. Prior to their departure from Malta, Firelight have continued working hard on ensuring the best result for the country at the event. They are considered to be a dark horse in the competition due to an international sounding track. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news as soon as it becomes available.

Source: OGAE Network


Monday, 21 April 2014 15:24

ESC 2014: An In-Depth Review of Malta

It has become customary for the escflashmalta.com editorial board to engage professional individuals from the music industry to assess the songs competing in the Eurovision Song Contest as presented to the European Broadcasting Union during the Heads of Delegation Meeting. Greig Watts, Joseph Zammit, Sharon Vaughn and John Scott from the United Kingdom, Malta, Sweden and the United States have been entrusted with the second semi-final, comprising of sixteen songs and set to take place on the 8th May 2014 at the B&W Hallerne in Copenhagen, Denmark. Making use of the running order and kicking off with number #1, we catch up with Malta (PBS) who will be represented by Firelight and the song Coming Home written by Richard Edwards Micallef.

Richard is 31. Music is in his blood. His father is a well-known singer in Malta and just about all his family are entertainers. Richard plays the Appalachian mountain dulcimer, acoustic guitar, and percussion. He is joined in Firelight by his sister, Michelle Mifsud, on the piano, and brothers Wayne William, as backing vocalist, and Daniel Micallef on the acoustic guitar. Additional band members are Tony Polidano, on the upright bass, and Leslie Decesare on the drums and harmonica.

In 2005, Richard took a step away from home to venture in the UK music industry. While in the UK he got the chance to perform alongside Leona Lewis, Ray Quinn and other X Factor contestants. He got the thumbs up from the legendary Simon Cowell on the judge’s panel and made it to the final 80. Later Richard joined a British rock band called Cast Away. His role in the band was playing the bass and vocals. He spent time touring many places across the south east of England. Richard returned to Malta in 2009. He has co-produced a number of singles with his brother, Wayne William. 

His music made it to the local charts hitting the top spot for a number of weeks. Richard entered the Malta Eurovision Song Contest in 2003 and 2005 as part of the group The Mics. Since 2010, Richard took part as Richard Edwards and came as close as the runner up in 2011 with the song Finally. Firelight’s song Coming Home is a mix of pop, rock and folk rolled into one. Richard believes people will be able to relate to Coming Home in many different situations and thinks it should be especially poignant for the thousands of emigrants who travel across Europe for work, spending months away from their families.


Malta, a country which is quite similar to Iceland in terms of results, noting that they have finished in second place on two previous occasions, and are yet to record a victory. It was back in 2002 and 2005 when the small Mediterranean Country almost topped the board not to mention that during the nineties, they failed to reach the top ten only once, at the end of the decade with Times Three and their entry Believe N Peace. Two artists have represented the country on more than one occasion, those being Chiara and Fabrizio Faniello whilst several others have tried their luck including; Miriam Christine, Chris and Moira, Mary Spiteri, Debbie Scerri, Paul Giordimaina, William Mangion and Georgina.

Professional Critics Voice their Opinion

Rating: 80%

Greig Watts: This one may have an advantage as I heard it before when judging for Malta, however I didn’t mark it very highly then and was proved wrong as it got through. For me it doesn’t really have a chorus so I still think its hard to see how it will do well in Eurovision overall. It has a nice blend of the two voices, but nothing has grabbed me and its 2 minutes into the song already, what seems to be the chorus is 2 mins 15 and im a bit bored by then, best part is the change when the female comes in.

Joseph Zammit: And might as well start from home. I have to admit that the first time I heard it during the Malta Eurovision, I judged it rather harshly as a band who jumped on the commercial success that the 'Mumford'-style bands had achieved last year. And I still believe that. They did however release a new version out for their official video which makes it somewhat less of an homage to Mumford and Sons and more of a stand alone song, and I have to admit, I do like it. 

The vocals in this are very unique and pleasing to the ear, the rhythm and melody of it is catchy and it easily gets stuck in your head, lyrics make sense and I'm sure are meaningful if applied to the correct setting. I did notice that the lead singer's brother has now joined the band to go up for the competition as well. I don't know whether it was an act of brotherly love or whether he dragged him along to rub it in his face that he was the one who beat him, just like any good brother would. The latter image amuses me. I have faith that this song will do well in the competition. I'm not saying that because of some ardent feelings of patriotism but because this song is all in all a very good song. 

Sharon Vaughn: This remains my favourite of all the contestants in this semi-final. They are current, the singers are incredible and by far the best in the competition.

John Scott: This one grows on me with each listen. The vocals and playing are very strong. The male female combination is interesting. 

Source: eurovision.tv


Published in Editorials

In 1993, Enrico Ruggeri was asked to represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest having triumphed at the Sanremo Music Festival on two occasions; that year with the song Mistero and in 1987 with Si Può Dare di Più in a trio alongside Umberto Tozzi and Gianni Morandi. The song he performed in Millstreet, Ireland was entitled Sole D'Europa which he wrote himself. Despite the sheer Italian identity, it only mustered up forty-five points on the night to finish in twelfth place. He recently spoke to esc-plus with regards to which entries he would personally vote for, should he be asked to form part of the Jury on the night of the final.

To the surprise of many, his maximum points would be given to the Georgian entry which is predicted by fans of the Eurovision Song Contest as the song which could get the dreaded nul points but nevertheless, on a positive note, he did award Malta's Coming Home by Firelight a total of seven points. This means that Enrico would classify Malta in fourth place, something which might not be too surprising considering that many are seeing the song as this years' dark horse. The Italian singer/songwriter is still very much active in the Italian industry, having last released an album back in 2010 whilst making several television appearances. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: esc-plus


In less than a month, Firelight will be taking to the stage of the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest set to take place in Copenhagen, Denmark but nevertheless the focus for the time being is the promotional team preceding that performance. In a press release posted through the official website of Television Malta, the main media arm of the Public Broadcasting Services, it was revealed that the representatives will be flying off to Moscow, Russia for a preview party which is set to feature a number of artists partaking in this years' edition of the Eurovision Song Contest along with Russian celebrities.

Philipp Kirkorov (Russia 95), Ani Lorak (Ukraine 08), Dima Bilan (Russia 06, 08), Alex Sparrow (Russia 11), Svetlana Loboda (Ukraine 09), t.A.T.u (Russia 03), Dmitry Koldun (Belarus 07), Mei Finegold (Israel 14), Teo (Belarus 14), Dilara Kazimova (Azerbaijan 14), Valentina Monetta (San Marino 12, 13, 14), Cristina Scarlat (Moldova 14) have all be included on the guest list alongside the Tolmachevy Sisters (Russia 14) and of course, Firelight (Malta 14) as previously mentioned. Malta had received maximum points from the eastern country back in 2005 when Chiara had represented the country with the song Angel which she wrote herself. 

This event is set to be covered by the leading media agencies in Russia including none other than; TV Rain, MTV Russia, Russia Today, First Channel, Channel Russia, HTB, Moscow 24, Radio Love and OK Magazine. This marks the third visit for Firelight abroad, having been to The Netherlands and the United Kingdom in recent days. In the meantime, Malta is also becoming a promotional spot for artists with visits coming from Mariya Yaremchuk, Sebalter, Hersi Matmuja and Molly Smitten-Downes. Dilara Kazimova is expected to visit Malta in the coming weeks. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: TVM / PBS


Coming Home, written by Richard Edwards Micallef and performed by Firelight has somewhat been given mixed reviews by fans of the Eurovision Song Contest, something that was to be expected with a folk/pop genre. Nevertheless, this also meant that professional individuals will most likely warm up to the song relatively quickly as seen in posts made by the first winner of the international competition, Lys Assia as well as Danish popstar and two-time Dansk Melodi Grand Prix participant, Bryan Rice.

In their ranking of all the entries competing in the 2014 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, Coming Home ranked in eleventh and seventh place respectively. Malta will be performing first in the second semi-final set to take place on the 8th May at the B&W Hallerne in Copenhagen, Denmark. At the moment, Firelight are busy in The Netherlands, getting ready to perform at the Eurovision In Concert where several acts will be making their appearance. We urge you to stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for all the latest news.

Source: Lys Assia & Brian Rice (Official Facebook)


As it was the case in most years, the Public Broadcasting Services has once again taken the initiative of producing a video for the Maltese entry Coming Home. Gianluca’s video was a massive success and it was never a surprise that PBS led by Tonio Portughese and Anton Attard decided to go to the man behind its success. Duane Laus along with his spouse Angie Laus were the brains behind the promotional video of Malta’s entry. Along with the input of PBS, Rodney Gauci and Gordon Bonello they came up with a product that will fit amongst the best popular videos in the music scene. 

The idea behind the Maltese video this year was exceptional and the cast and crew made sure that the message came across well. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the First World War and the video is “REMEMBERING THOSE WHO NEVER CAME HOME.” As any Brit would tell you, the idea of the 100th anniversary of this event has take the country by storm, as the media has been promoting this event for quite a long time now. Surely the Maltese video will feel right at home there and one would think, we really hit the right spot by appealing to the emotions of the public and gave the song a newfound meaning. Having said that, the perspective from where you actually look at it plays a vital role.

In fact one could say not everyone took a liking to our creative masterpiece or rather it was misinterpreted. The first reports of complaints came flooding in, after our video was previewed on BBC. A senior representative released an official statement earlier this week saying: “My heartfelt sympathy goes to all the families who have lost someone dear to them during the First and Second World War. The Maltese video has been sent to us by the European Broadcasting Union to promote the Maltese entry at the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest and like every other promotional video we were obliged to air it - we never thought it would touch so many people. We would like to express our sincere apologies but the video intended no harm.”


A number of nursing homes reported that after the preview of the Maltese video most of the patients were moved to tears. In fact in some extraordinary cases there were patients who needed medical attention as they started hyperventilating and went into a panic attack during and after the video was previewed. One disgruntled family member went on to comment that if she knew what the video was about she would have never let her mother watch it especially since she her mother had lost her father in the First World War and her husband in the Second World War. After the St Catherine’s Nursing Home in Surrey revealed their story to thesun.co.uk another twenty-four nursing homes said that they had experienced a similar situation.

In an ironic tone some even went on to comment that after the preview video was aired they had estimated that for this particular week they have used 5% more toilet paper as they had to provide their patients with a lot of tissue paper to wipe away their tears. Local markets also said they saw a sudden increase of sales in tissue paper but never thought that the reason behind all this would be a Eurovision video from the tiny country of Malta. On the other hand locally, the video was well received although some senior citizens did comment that the video was a bit overwhelming but would have loved to see more scenes featuring the happy moments were families of the lucky ones who actually made it home were reunited.  

Well, not all press is bad press because thanks to this those who hadn’t yet watched the video went on to the popular website YouTube to watch the most talked about video in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest and thanks it the video has garnered almost 170,000. In fact most the hits came in the past week after it was previewed on BBC. Coincidence or not, the video is a strong one and perhaps in the light of recent political turmoil Malta’s song and video will make the troubled countries realize that in every war there are no winners - only martyrs – the ones who never come home. Stay tuned to escflashmalta.com for more of the latest news.

NOTE: We would like to inform everyone that this was the April Fools Article for the day. It is pivotal to point out that the reception for the video has been more than satisfactory. We would like to wish Firelight the very best of luck as they represent Malta with Coming Home.

Source: BBC, escflashmalta.com


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