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Rewwixta - A Brief Documentary

Watch on TVM this Saturday 28th November at 22:05. Repeat on Sunday 29th November at 19:30

Rewwixta is an oratorio composed by Maestro Joseph Vella to the poetic drama written by Professor Oliver Friggieri, that presents tragic and historical themes, tied to the French occupation in Malta, in music and literary form.

The documentary will focus on the story behind Rewwixta and the efforts made by Festivals Malta to give life to this pivotal work, as well as two of Maestro Vella’s other works in the pipeline.

Maestro Joseph Vella






A passion for music...


Maestro Joseph Vella (1942-2018) was a prolific Maltese composer and conductor who is considered to be Malta’s leading contemporary composer both locally and internationally.

Maestro Vella studied under the tutelage of his father, after which he was admitted as a Fellow of the London College of Music in 1967. He graduated in music from the University of Durham, UK, and continued his studies in composition with Franco Donadoni and in conducting with Franco Ferrara, in Siena, Italy. In 1958 he composed an orchestral suite Three Mood Pieces op 4 (played at the Manoel Theatre, Valletta) which introduced him to the public as a composer. Together with Verena Maschat he set up the School of Music in Valletta in 1972 and in 1994 he was appointed Associate Professor of Music at the University of Malta. 


Professor Oliver Friggieri













An advocate of Maltese identity…


Professor Oliver Friggieri (1947-2020) was a philosopher, poet, author and educator who dedicated his life in promoting the Maltese language through literary text.

He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Maltese, Italian and Philosophy in 1978, later going on to achieve his Doctorate in Literature in 1978. Twelve years later in 1988, Friggieri was appointed as a lecturer at the University of Malta, going on to become Head of Department of Maltese and later becoming a Professor in 1990.

Professor Friggieri is known for his many works in Maltese literary criticism, including his contribution to many prefaces for authors’ publications, articles both in Maltese and foreign languages, as well as various books. Among his most pivotal works one can find the Dictionary of Maltese Literary Terms and the annotated edition of Dun Karm Psaila’s “Il-Jien u Lil Hinn Minnu”. Professor Friggieri is also remembered for his work on various poems in Maltese which included themes on the existential crisis of man and the nation. He also wrote novels and plays, as well as making a substantial contribution to the art of translation.

Rewwixta Poetic Text

Oliver Friggieri.jpg


A Festivals Malta production in collaboration with the Vella family


This documentary was made before the passing of Professor Oliver Friggieri


Annabelle Stivala

Charles Vincenti

Graziella Debattista

Hermann Farrugia Frantz

Joseph Debrincat

Louis Andrew Cassar

Mario Gauci

Nathalie Vella

Nicola Said

Sigmund Mifsud



Christopher Dingli



“Lament Op. 103” by Mro. Joseph Vella interpreted by the

Malta Philharmonic Orchestra




Kit Azzopardi



Executive Production

Festivals Malta



Festivals Malta Director

Annabelle Stivala



Artistic Coordination

Tatiana Lisnic




Monique Sammut



Production and Logistics Assistant

Mario Cassar



Website and Design

Clayton Saliba




Clayton Saliba




Alice Azzopardi

Celine Caruana



Special Thanks to

The Cathedral Archives

The Mdina Cathedral

The Cathedral Museum

Malta Philharmonic Orchestra



This footage was filmed under the guidelines issued by the Department of Health and all the necessary precautions were taken to ensure the safety and health of the participants and crew.


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