Sant nominates Malta Band Clubs Assoc. for European Citizens Prize
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Maltese MEP Alfred Sant has nominated the Malta Band Clubs Association to the European Citizen's Prize for 2016. Dr. Sant said he was making this nomination in recognition of the Malta Band Clubs Assocation's achievements, and to honour the contribution of all band clubs in the Maltese islands to popular culture and social cohesion.
Most clubs are affiliated with the Malta Band Club Association, a non-profit NGO created in 1947 to coordinate the talents and traditions of band clubs. It promotes relationships between clubs, assists and represents them in dealings with government and other authorities.
The Association is committed to the continuous development of music education. The nomination has been co-signed by MEPs Miriam Dalli and Marlene Mizzi.
Dr. Sant said that across local communities in Malta, band clubs developed over the last 150 years. They originated from two activities prevalent in Malta's traditional society: participation in church music and in the bands of British regiments stationed in Malta. Band clubs promote a popular appreciation of European classical music while encouraging locally created works.
"Typically a club has centrally located premises run by volunteers, with activities focusing on the band. It plays for the village festa, celebrations of the Catholic liturgy, and concerts. Other activities include the organisation of music lessons and musical archives, and the commissioning of new works. Clubs are vital institutions in community life," said Dr. Sant.
In 2014, band clubs totalled 90 with 37,100 members, of which 11.4 per cent were band players. They organised 1,177 musical programmes – a formidable contribution to popular culture." said Dr. Sant.