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“It's rare these days to find an opera singer with such an individual sound that you can identify him or her in just a couple notes. Tenor Joseph Calleja, from the tiny island of Malta, is just such a singer. You can hear the golden Mediterranean sunshine in his voice, and I love his old-fashioned fast vibrato, which flickers like a vintage silent movie. Calleja…is arguably today's finest lyric tenor…” — NPR

September 24, 27, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Verdi: Macbeth The Metropolitan Opera Joseph Calleja in New York, NY Address: Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY. More information
September 29, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Recital Club Musical de Québec Joseph Calleja in Québec City Time: 8:00pm. More information
October 3, 8, 11*, 15, 18, 2014
*Live in HD
http://josephcalleja.com
Verdi: Macbeth The Metropolitan Opera Joseph Calleja in New York, NY Address: Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY. More information
October 12, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Richard Tucker Gala Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center Joseph Calleja in New York, NY More information
November 8, 11, 14, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Verdi: Rigoletto Bavarian State Opera Joseph Calleja in Munich More information
November 18, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Gala Concert with Orchestra Auditorio Nacional de Música Joseph Calleja in Madrid More information
November 21, 2014 http://josephcalleja.com Gala Concert with Orchestra Gulbenkian Joseph Calleja in Lisbon More information
December 18, 22, 30, 2014
January 2, 6, 13, 17, 2015
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Verdi: Un Ballo in Maschera Royal Opera House, Covent Garden Joseph Calleja in London More information
February 1, 6, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor Deutsche Oper Berlin Joseph Calleja in Berlin More information
February 21, 23, 26, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Puccini: Madama Butterfly Bavarian State Opera Joseph Calleja in Munich More information
March 16, 19, 24, 28
April 1, 4, 7, 10, 2015
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Donizetti: Lucia di Lammermoor The Metropolitan Opera Joseph Calleja in New York, NY Address: Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY. More information
April 14, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Recital The Folly Theater Joseph Calleja in Kansas City, Missouri Time: 7:30pm. More information
April 17, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Recital Jordan Hall Joseph Calleja in Boston, MA More information
May 21, 23, 27, 30
June 2, 5, 8, 10, 2015
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Puccini: La Bohème Royal Opera House, Covent Garden Joseph Calleja in London More information
June 22, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Gala Concert with Orchestra Concertgebouw Joseph Calleja in Amsterdam More information
June 29
July 3, 2015
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Puccini: La Rondine Deutsche Oper Berlin Joseph Calleja in Berlin More information
July 13, 2015 http://josephcalleja.com Puccini: Madama Butterfly Bavarian State Opera Joseph Calleja in Munich More information

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Joseph's Blog

September 10th, 2014

A summer festival in Malta?

I was more than a bit amused to read some negative reporting re the fact that the government sponsored my summer concert. Hundreds of thousand of euros, if not millions, were thrown around  and some went as far to state that I was “on the take” and part of the hundreds of thousands were directed to my pocket. The claims are so ridiculous and unfounded that, to date,  I didn’t even bother to point it out. For those unfamiliar with our island, Malta is ferociously bi-partisan it is inevitable that, for some at least,  everything has to be turned into a political football. Others simply measure by their own yardstick. For the record I got no remuneration by the government, whether directly or indirectly, in the deal they made with NNG promotions nor form part of same company.  To my knowledge, the funds are wisely spent on the filming, editing and international distribution of the concert creating an incredible advert for Malta. Should the government sponsor such initiatives? Of course it should- as what better advertisement can Malta have to increase the much coveted “cultural tourism”?

In Malta we have the curse but also the blessing of being very small. So small in fact that you can walk from one end of the island to the other in less than a day. And what a walk that would be. Despite our small size, our location – smack in the middle of the Mare Nostrum  – made sure that every major civilization left its mark throughout our 7000 year history. Natural resources are pretty much non existent and even for fresh water we have to turn to the sea. Still our island nation enjoys the most important resource of all – its people. Once you remove our petty and constant bickering which (surprise surprise) usually revolve around politics, the Maltese are a force to be reckoned with and a nation that shy away from challenges we are not. Most of us are at least bi-lingual , hard working, resourceful and good hearted. Talent is also another virtue that this island has and never before  did we have so many young budding artists on the verge of an international career. When I was studying to be an opera singer there was literally no one else on the scene on a professional level bar Miriam Gauci. Nowadays we have close to a dozen. Clare Ghigo, Nico Darmanin, Cliff Zammit Stevens, Joseph Lia, Nicola Said and Marvic Monreal are already chasing their dream in conservatories and colleges abroad. Nico Darmanin in particular is already performing professionally and has already debuted at the Royal Opera House. This from a nation of 400,000.

Indeed it is a time of renaissance for at least classical music in Malta. So many festivals whether in Gozo, the place of my very first performances,  or Valletta. In fact it is time that the government notices the elephant in the room and launch THE proper summer festival our island deserves. The raw material is in place already it just needs to be coordinated and a month long festival is really within our grasp and no there is no multi million euro outlay as we have the necessary infrastructure in place already.  Our airport and airline are top notch and hotels comparable to the best on mainland Europe. All that is needed is that nudge, the concentration of the laser beam, the proverbial pulling of the same rope and Malta could host a festival that would rival any in Europe. This government has won with such a majority that it should really use that majority to implement changes that no one had the courage to do before. Redundant boards and committees should be restructured or removed altogether. Competent people should be given executive power to effect necessary changes and not waste their time and energies navigating the endless meanders of bureaucracy caused by useless boards.

 

Last but not least lets give Malta its cultural home back and move ahead with a National Theatre/auditorium. I hear there are great plans for the MCC, now is the time to move forward and turn these plans into reality. We have so much to offer and it would be a great sin to miss out on this opportunity. I dream of the day when Valletta will turn into a major and globally renowned  artistic hub. Believe me when I tell you that we have what it takes.