Location: Gozo, Malta

The Medinea Gozo session of the Orchestre des Jeunes de la Méditerranée welcomed 9 young improvisers from France, Greece, Italy, Malta and Tunisia and ended up with a concert in the city of Gozo on March 31st. Fabrizio Cassol, composer and jazzman, led this session and proposed to the emerging artists selected to experiment with techniques of collective composition, within an ensemble, with the aim of leading to the creation of a common musical production that also reveals individual singularities.

Medinea Gozo Session 2022 is supported by Medinea and the Erasmus+ Programme, produced by ARC Research & Consultancy with the support of Arts Council MaltaMinistry of Gozo – Cultural Heritage Directorate – Gharb Local Council – Għarb Band Club – APS Bank

This session is organised in the frame of the Medinea On Air project led by the Medinea network, coordinated by the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, and bringing together a consortium of 6 leading musical and cultural institutions with close collaboration of the Mediterranean Youth Orchestra.

The session ended with a concert at the Għarb Parish Hall after 2 weeks of collective composition and was broadcasted live on Facebook and is available on YouTube:

Outreach Activities

Four outreach activities with the aim of reaching specific communities and audience groups to promote the Medinea Session Gozo, as well as to give visibility to the activities and values of the Medinea network.

Online Panel Discussion: Gender Imbalance in the Music World 

In 2021, only 25% of all applications for Medinea Sessions came from female applicants. Recordings led by women formed only one-fifth of the top 50 albums NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll over 2017 to 2019, and this seems to be a long-term trend: a survey of British jazz musicians in 2004 suggested 14% were female. (Source). In the context of Medinea Session Gozo, an online panel discussion was hosted to reflect on the realities of gender imbalance in the music world. It posed the question: What is leading to the underrepresentation of women in (jazz) music? How do social behaviours and self-confidence impact the participation of women in music? What do consumption patterns tell us and are there any efforts being made to bridge the gap in programming?
The panel discussed challenges, experiences, and sustainable initiatives. It consisted of Mariella Cassar Cordina (Composer & Educator), Nadine Axisa (Jazz Singer), Alex Bezzina (Jazz Musician & Academic), and Davinia Galea (ARC Research & Consultancy, Medinea Partner). The discussion was moderated by Stephanie Bonnici (Cultural Manager).

Musico-literary collaboration with Inizjamed 

ARC developed a collaboration with Inizjamed – a voluntary non-governmental cultural organisation (registered as a Voluntary Organisation in Malta, VO/0355) founded in 1998 in Malta that is committed towards the regeneration of culture and artistic expression in the Maltese Islands and actively promotes a greater awareness of the cultures of the Mediterranean. Through this collaboration, four local writers (Keith Borg, Klara Vassallo, Gabriel Lia, and Elena Cardona) merged the Maltese word with Mediterranean music after having been invited to visit and reflect on the Medinea Session musical residency and the intercultural compositions emerging from the village of Gharb, Gozo. One writer’s role (Elena Cardona) also transformed into that of a dramaturgical advisor to the musicians during the process.
The poems were presented in the form of a reading preceding the concert. They were also translated to English and presented as surtitles, and both versions were made accessible in the concert’s digital programme together with the writers’ biographies.
The initiative was directly supported by APS Bank.

Encounters with the local cultural communities

In view that the residency was taking place in the quaint village of Għarb on the island of Gozo, ARC organised three encounters with different members of the local cultural communities: the Viżitazzjoni Band Club (primarily aimed at the teaching of musical instruments), the Grupp Folkloristiku tal-Qiegħa (local folk group), and schoolchildren from the Għarb Primary School. These intergenerational and intercultural encounters supported the immersion of the musicians within the local community and the promotion of knowledge and dissemination of diverse expressions of Mediterranean music heritage reflected in the Medinea manifesto.
The encounters were organised with the support of the Cultural Heritage Directorate within the Ministry for Gozo, and the Għarb Local Council.

Press review

For more information on the Mediterranean Youth Orchestra’s auditions, an explanatory document is available HERE and an information session was held on Thursday 10 March at 18:00 ( 17:00 UTC)
Photo by Inigo Taylor, courtesy of ARC Research & Consultancy