Gozo
Singing, lights, and a whole lot of emotion: it’s opera season in Gozo!
Sure to make a Gozo trip more interesting.

Jillian Mallia

Gozo has many wonders to see and experience, but something that is also a gem associated with the sister isle is the opera. Gozo’s association with opera music dates back to the late 19th century, when the first bands were being established. These bands were the only source of musical entertainment on the island and were also aligned with Italian culture, since much of the music performed was opera music. As more band clubs were formed and healthy competition arose, respective opera houses were constructed: Teatru Astra and Teatru Aurora.

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Still, after their initial introduction and popularity, opera productions lay dormant on the island until the late 1970s, when, as a representative from Teatru Aurora says, "the Leone Philharmonic Society inaugurated the 1600-seat Aurora Opera House, and in just three months, the first opera, Madama Butterfly, was produced."The Astra Theatre also started putting up operas," the representative continues, and "this allowed Gozo to gain a strong foothold" within the opera industry.

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Over the years, the opera productions in Gozo gained momentum with big singers from around the world coming to direct or even star in them, appearing in front of local audiences. These opera houses have also been the venues in which acclaimed local artists, including Miriam Cauchi and Joseph Calleja, debuted their impressive operatic careers.

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Both Teatru Astra and Teatru Aurora produce a fully staged opera at least once a year, often with international soloists. The upcoming performances include Tosca at the Aurora Opera House and La Traviata at the Astra Theatre, forming part of Gozo's opera month.

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Which will you be checking out this year?

10th October 2018


Jillian Mallia
Written by
Jillian Mallia
A book lover, writer and globetrotter who loves exploring new places and the local gems that the Maltese Islands have to offer. An avid foodie and arts fanatic, Jillian searches the island and beyond for the perfect settings to write about.

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