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Swing to the music as BANDLI returns for second edition

Contemporary music takes the leap from theatre to piazza in BANDLI, where the public can create a musical ensemble as they swing

30 June 2017, 1:11pm
The eight swings also act as an eight-piece ensemble, taking the music out of the theatre and onto the streets
The eight swings also act as an eight-piece ensemble, taking the music out of the theatre and onto the streets
Following last year’s event, BANDLI will return to give the public the opportunity to ‘swing to contemporary music’, as motion sensors pick up their movements as they sway back and forth, triggering a musical instrument.

Directed by composer Ruben Zahra, who is the artistic director of Modern Music Days, the basic concept of the installation is that the eight swings also act as an eight-piece ensemble, taking the music out of the theatre and onto the streets.

“Although a similar concept exists abroad, I thought it had great potential for Malta, particularly as it allows the public to engage with contemporary music in an entertaining fashion,” Zahra said.

Zahra is known to be committed to the interdisciplinary expression and to always seek new ways to promote contemporary music. The last event within the framework of Modern Music Days was Rhythms of Vision at Teatru Manoel, which combined contemporary music with the video-art commissioned from seven local visual artists.

He was also recently commissioned by the Malta EU Presidency to create an architectural projection project, entitled ‘Colours in Motion’, to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Rome.

Last year, over 5,000 people swung to contemporary music over the 10-day calendar
Last year, over 5,000 people swung to contemporary music over the 10-day calendar
“When BANDLI was launched last year, over 5,000 people swung to contemporary music over the 10-day calendar of the Malta International Arts Festival,” Zahra added.

The artistic team behind BANDLI includes technical director Sergio Costa and Andrew Schembri, who is in charge of music interfacing.

This year, the music for the swings has been created by composers Alex Vella Gregory, Albert Garzia and Mario Sammut. According to them, the challenge to create new music for BANDLI is that the composition needs to change and adjust to the number of people interacting with the swings.

“The ethos of this BANDLI is shared by the Malta International Arts Festival, as well as by the Valletta 2018 Foundation; artistic excellence accessible to large audiences,” Zahra concluded.

BANDLI will hit St George’s Square in Valletta between Friday 30 June and Sunday 16 July.

The artistic installation is a collaboration between the Malta International Arts Festival and the Modern Music Days concert series of Teatru Manoel, as part of the Valletta 2018 Cultural Programme in the run-up to the European Capital of Culture year.

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