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Mużika Mużika | The Revival of Maltese Music

Mużika Mużika | The Revival of Maltese Music

The local music industry and its esteemed followers have been yearning for a reputable music festival for a number of years. Fortunately, ‘Mużika Mużika’ (literal translation of ‘Music Music’), successfully managed to revive the industry in a span of two years, pulsating hope in music devotees, singers, writers, singer-songwriters, musicians and producers alike.


The History of the Mużika Mużika

Mużika Mużika’s bright future had an indirect humble beginning back in 1960. It all started when a Christian youth group banned together to organise a national festival for the enjoyment of the Maltese public. This relatively small festival created a tremendous ripple effect, motivating organisations to host festivals specifically targeted to re-vitalise Maltese music. The Maltese festival ‘Għanja tal-Poplu’ (People’s Ode Song Contest) did just that, and it is still currently running from its commencement in 1973 with the help of the Youth Travel Circle (YTC). They have been hosting a yearly contest with national music giants taking home first prize, including singers Glen Vella and Eleanor Cassar back in 2000, and Corazon in 2007,2009,2010, and 2016.

In 1981, The ‘Festival Internazzjonali tal-Kanzunetta Maltija’ was announced, delighting prospective competitors to submit their entry in hopes to share their music with the Maltese public. What was different about this festival was the actual aim of the outcome. While it’s main audience was the Maltese public, this particular festival, which we now know as ‘Mużika Mużika’, wanted to amalgamate the ideas of creating Maltese music and not only sharing this with the national audience, but also to expand to an international level. The top three of this festival had the opportunity to compete in international festivals, with the Maltese language, something which was implicitly frowned up due to the disappointing results in the Eurovision

Song Contest in 1971 and 1972. In some instances, this festival also incentivised international artists to collaborate and add on songs in Maltese on their album/CD.

To the astonishment of musical aficionados, following 20 years of consecutive entertainment, the televised ‘Festival Internazzjonali tal-Kanzunetta Maltija’ was abruptly called off. Multiple people even petitioned for its return, albeit it making a surprise comeback for one year in 2013, still the festival never recuperated to its prime years.

Grandiose Return

In 2021, with the support of the Minister for the National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government, it was announced that ‘Festival Internazzjonali tal-Kanzunetta Maltija’ was returning decades after its absence, under the new name ‘Mużika Mużika’. With over 320,000 televiewers from all around the country, the festival took the industry by storm, instantaneously becoming a national sensation. The inaugural winner was Glen Vella, Malta Eurovision representative in 2011 with ‘One Life’ and the ‘Għanja tal-Poplu’ co-winner in 2011. His song ‘Ħarsa Biss’ (‘Just One Look’), written by musical legend Joe Julian Farrugia and composed by singer and producer Philip Vella, initially tied with runner-up Christian Arding, both scoring 78 points. Glen Vella eventually won the tiebreak due to his overall televote score. This nail-biting finish gripped viewers, causing them to eagerly await next year’s edition.

Mużika Mużika 2022

Spanning over three days between the 24,25 and the 26 of March 2022, this year’s large-scale live festival will surely be a marvel of musical talent, live orchestra, brilliant staging, and ingenious compositions. This year’s participants have already been announced and the line-up is undeniably impressive. From 2013 Junior Eurovision winner Gaia Cauchi, to 2012 Eurovision representative Kurt Calleja, 2017 Eurovision representative Claudia Faniello, and X-factor Malta participants Nicole Frendo and Bloodline, this year’s show is set to be worth the hype and vigorous anticipation.

Which one of the 20 participants will take home the highly regarded title of ‘Mużika Mużika 2022 Winner’?