The Malta Independent 13 June 2024, Thursday
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Students and musicians compose original song with lyrics from a Maltese poem

Monday, 20 May 2024, 14:13 Last update: about 24 days ago

A group of about 60 students from the St Benedict's College Middle School participated in a first-of-its-kind event, where they composed with musicians an original song with lyrics from a Maltese poem.

Linguist Maris Camilleri analysed the Maltese poem "Għasfur Ċkejken" by Gozitan poet Ġorġ Pisani with the students.

The event, called ‘Mal-Melodija’, was organised by the Maltese Language Centre for seventh year students, as part of the centre’s work to promote the language and unite Maltese literature with music.

The choice of the poem was made to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the death of Pisani, also known as the ‘patriotic poet’ due to the poems he wrote, which include "L-Għanja tar-Rebħa," "Lil Mikiel Anton Vassalli," and "Lill-Ilsien Malti."

In the second part of the activity, singer Megan May and pianist and musical arranger Aleandro Spiteri Monsigneur demonstrated to the students the process of how three stanzas of this poem could be shaped into the lyrics of a song.

They explained step-by-step how the lyrics match with the melody, mood, and rhythm, while involving the students to create the music for the chorus. The final stage of the process led to "Għasfur Ċkejken" being recorded as a modern and original song.

CEO of the Maltese Language Centre Norma Saliba said that ‘Mal-Melodija’ is an activity that combines literature, expressed through writing and reading, with rhythm and melody, which are key factors in expressing artistic talent through music.

She said that the aim of this activity is for students to enjoy learning Maltese literature through music in the school itself; a teaching style that is somewhat different from usual.

The Head of the St. Benedict's College Middle School Charmaine Pisani Grixti, as well as the teachers and students who participated in this activity, expressed their desire for more similar activities to be held in the next school year, together with the Maltese Language Centre.

“This is to further increase awareness about our national language with various resources adapted to the different ages of the children,” she said.

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