MCAST students adapt Maltese poetry to film

Short films aim to help secondary school students get better grasp on Maltese poetry

The MCAST College of Art and Design at Targa Gap, Mosta, today inaugurated 14 short film adaptations of classic Maltese poetry by its students.

Students of the BA Hons. course in Media and Moving Image, led by lecturer Ian Attard, were tasked with adapting poetry by the likes of Dun Karm, Ruzar Briffa, Joe Friggieri and others.

MCAST principal Stephen Vella said that the aim of the project, which currently includes poems covered in Form 1 and 2, is to give young students a better grasp of the poetry they are studying.

"This is not to say that the work of our great poets is in any way unclear, but when you're a young student it's helpful to have some visual cues," Vella said.

Attard said the project also aims to give Maltese poetry more lasting relevance.

"Our students had an interesting challenge in adapting a work that was written some years ago, to a contemporary context. If we manage to open this kind of dialogue with the past, what would ideally happen is that other students and artists will also interpret the poems in their own way in subsequent years. In that way, Maltese poetry remains alive and entirely relevant."

Speaking to MaltaToday, Jorje Bosios, one of the participating students, said that the students were given carte blanche on which poems they could choose. Having picked Gorg Borg's Il-Bejjiegh tal-Gazzetti, Bosios proceeded to adapt the "short and sweet" poem into a song, giving her short film a music video bent.

Addressing the students, Education Minister Evarist Bartolo congratulated all the participating students, and urged them to endeavour to not only consume the works of great artists, but to create their own as well.

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