Wind bands in the Maltese islands have always been closely related with the town or village festas that are organised every week during summer. The playing of wind instruments in the Gozo festas goes back to at least mid-18th century when a very small number of instrumentalists – tamborlini e fifri (drums and cane flutes) – used to accompany processions. Then, during the first half of the 19th century one comes across several small groups referred to as suonatori di banda (band musicians). However, it was in the second half of the 19th century that one witnesses the official formation of two bands in Victoria, namely Il Leone (associated with the feast of the Assumption of our Lady celebrated every 15th August) and La Stella (associated with the feast of Saint George, celebrated on the third Sunday of July). Apart from band marches, both bands organize concerts featuring various genres of music ranging from symphonic to pop, rock and film music.
After occupying different premises, both bands have their premises (band clubs) in Victoria’s main street, i.e. Republic Street. Both band clubs incorporate two wonderful opera houses in opera productions are presented every year.
by Joseph Debrincat
Inno Il Leone by Giuseppe Stivala – Leone Band conducted by Colin Attard
Inno La Stella by Giuseppe Giardini Vella – La Stella Band conducted by Joseph Vella
Per la Festa di Maria Assunta in Cielo – Lyrics by Ramiro Barbaro di San Giorgio; Music by Orlando Crescimanno. Leone Band conducted by Colin Attard
Għawdex Kollu Tbiddel f’Ġenna – Lyrics by Ġanninu Cremona; Music by Vincenzo Ciappara. Leone Band conducted by Colin Attard
Ifraħ, Ifraħ, Belt tas-Sema – Lyrics by Giovanni Gulia; Music by Willie Attard. Leone Band conducted by Colin Attard
Ferreħija Jdoqqu l-Qniepen – Lyrics by Koli Apap; Music by Willie Attard. Leone Band conducted by Colin Attard
Inno a San Giorgio Martire – Lyrics by Luigi Billion; Music by Giuseppe Giardini Vella.
Innu Popolari lill-Kbir Martri San Ġorġ – Lyrics by Patri Akkursio Xerri; Music by Vincenzo Ciappara.
Ġorġi ta’ Lydda – Lyrics by Can Joe Meilak; Music by Joseph Vella.
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