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May 24, 2016

Role debut as Don José in Bizet’s Carmen

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In a 2015-16 season bookended by role debuts, beginning with Faust in Boito’s Mefistofele, Joseph Calleja now sings his first Don José in Bizet’s Carmen with Oper Frankfurt.

In a production by Barrie Kosky conducted by Constantinos Carydis, the Maltese tenor stars opposite Paula Murrihy in the tempestuous title role. Karen Vuong sings José’s sweetheart Micaëla, and Daniel Schmutzhard is the toreador Escamillo.

Joseph can be heard in the role June 5, 10, 15, 19, 25, and 29 and July 3; he is also scheduled to reprise the role with Lyric Opera of Chicago in the company’s 2016-17 season.

May 19, 2016

Summer performances in Frankfurt, Llangollen, Orange, Munich, and Malta

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Joseph Calleja begins his summer performance season with a role debut as Don José in Bizet’s Carmen at Oper Frankfurt, June 5 through July 3. In the perennially popular work, the Maltese tenor stars opposite Paula Murrihy in the title role, with Daniel Schmutzhard as Escamillo and Karen Vuong as Micaëla. Constantinos Carydis conducts Barrie Kosky’s production.

Later in July, Joseph will be back in Germany for two performances at the Bayerische Staatsoper as part of the Munich Opera Festival. On July 21 and 24, he returns to Boito’s Mefistofele, a role debut earlier this season that earned him acclaim from audiences and critics alike.

A few days following the run of Carmen in Frankfurt, Joseph heads to Llangollen, Wales to co-headline a concert with Bryn Terfel at the Llangollen International Music Festival on July 7. Concerts for Joseph continue with Verdi’s Requiem at the Chorégies d’Orange on July 16.

Joseph’s summer season culminates in his annual open-air concert in his home country of Malta. Held this year on July 28 at Fosos in Floriana, the event will feature special guest Antonello Venditti together with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra and BOV Joseph Calleja Children’s Choir. Fans can also choose part of the musical lineup for this event by commenting here on Joseph’s Facebook.

April 22, 2016

Entire population of Malta given access to Meludia

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On May 2, Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat will launch a nationwide deployment of Meludia following Joseph Calleja’s championship of the the French web-based music learning platform. Access for an initial three-year period will be granted gratis to every resident and visitor of the Maltese tenor’s home country in an effort to increase music literacy.

“Meludia is intuitively interactive, fun and it will bring musical education to a new level,” said Joseph, who is also active with the BOV Joseph Calleja foundation to foster music education for underprivileged children. “I am thrilled that it will be available to anyone in Malta that wants to boost his or her musical education or start from scratch.”

As part of the launch, a team from Meludia will spend two weeks in Malta to introduce the platform in primary schools, universities, community centers, retirement homes, hospitals, and prisons.

Click here for more information on Meludia.

Click here for a video demonstration of the Meludia Method.

Joseph's Blog

May 16th, 2016

Quo Vadis Eurovision and other stories

Malta did not win the Eurovision but lo and behold the sun still rose and the island (the center of the known universe) still spun…

My two cents is that Ira Losco gave a really good performance and that the whole presentation was excellent. She shouldn’t have performed cause she is pregnant? Come off it – I have performed repeatedly with pregnant opera singers well into their 7th and 8th month of pregnancy and trust me when I say that rehearsing and performing for a full opera production is much more physically demanding than a couple of days at the Eurovision. Of course there are those who know much better than the undersigned and who went on to say that the presentation was a tad “camp”…oh the irony when one considers that the Eurovision is the campest of them all.

Meanwhile, this wouldn’t be Malta and the Eurovision wouldn’t be the Eurovision unless its politicized to the exhaustible hilt. The inevitable “mud slinging competition,” which we will see a lot of in the coming 22 months, ensued and even yours truly (inexplicably) ended up in the midst of the fray, in yet another “supernova” in a tea cup. The Eurovision suddenly became an interchangeable bullet to be used ad nauseam by both sides much like bitter parents who use their innocent children during disputes.  I have always found sycophants interesting, even amusing but they will not be getting the much desired Streisand effect from me, thank you very much. It is part of human nature after all to conjure conspiracies and we are not going to let the simple truth get in the way of some exciting and convenient fiction.

Speaking of “conjuring” is it me or is a company advertising real estate using a chap “connected” with the tragic and unnecessary death of an underage girl? It must be a clone or a”doppleganger”, otherwise this would be the epitome of bad taste and a 100 shades of wrong. Don’t get me wrong I am all for “second chances” and all of that but shouldn’t there be due process first? After all Lisa Marie didn’t get a second chance did she?