A touch of history during Festival Mediterranea 2011

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A touch of history during Festival Mediterranea 2011History is very much on the menu during the 10th edition of Festival Mediterranea, currently underway in Gozo, with a number of events that should go down well with those who appreciate local heritage. The festival, organised by volunteers at Teatru Astra, opened on the 27th October with the first of two representations of the opera Norma, received enthusiastically by local and foreign reviewers, and runs until Saturday, the 19th November.

The upcoming events include what should be an interesting lecture by leading historian Victor Mallia-Milanes, Professor in the Department of History at the University of Malta, discussing the last years of the Order of St John on Malta from the perspective of two contemporary Venetian Hospitallers – Ottavio Benvenuti, who was the Order’s Minister Plenipotentiary and Receiver in Venice, and Antonio Miari, who was the Grandmaster’s Secretary for Italian Affairs and Venice’s Resident Minister on Malta. Both kept an extensive correspondence recording their first-hand experiences during the last years of the 18th Century, both collections being insightful in what they say and as vociferous in what they don’t. Prof. Mallia-Milanes’ lecture will be held this Saturday, the 5th of November at 9.00am at the Banca Giuratale in Victoria, and is open to the public free of charge.

Another appointmentto be kept for art and church-lovers is on Saturday the 12th of November, with an on-site lecture led by artist and art-historian Mark Sagona, entitled Baroque to Romantic: Gozo’s Masterpieces. The activity focuses on key works produced between the early 17th Century and the late 19th Century, taking participants in several churches to have a first-hand experience of the material under focus. The discussion will include the Baroque of Mattia Preti and his local contemporaries, the Late Baroque currents of Francesco Zahra and Rocco Buhagiar, the Neo-Classical traits of Pietro Paolo Azzopardi, the Nazarene and Purist art of Giuseppe Hyzler and Salvatore Busuttil and the Romanticism of Giuseppe Calì. The on-site lecture starts at 9am. Those wishing to participate should meet until 8.45am in front of Teatru Astra. Booking is essential.A touch of history during Festival Mediterranea 2011The festival continues for a fourth weekend, this time focusing on our unique prehistoric heritage with another series of events led by British scholar and archaeologist Dr David Trump. His first on-site lecture and walk tackles the Bronze Age settlement at In-Nuffara, on Friday, the 18th of November at 3pm. The second appointment is that of a lecture, Conversations with Skeletons, being held on Saturday, the 19th of November at 9am at the Ministry for Gozo Conference Hall, in St Francis Square, Victoria. The latter event is being held free of charge.

Festival Mediterranea closes off with the annual much-anticipated band concert by the La Stella Philharmonic, details of which will be announced in the coming days.

More information about the Festival and the events held as part of it are available online on www.mediterranea.com.mt or by calling on 21550985. Events may be booked via email on bookings@mediterranea.com.mt or by calling 79256897.

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