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Charles Camilleri

Malta's national composer, Charles Camilleri, was born in Hamrun on 7 September 1931. Virtually self-taught, his early studies were in Australia, and his career as a composer and conductor included long periods spent in Canada and England. His first publisher was Music & Vision's Basil Ramsey, then head of publications at Novello in London.

He wrote hundreds of works for chamber ensemble, orchestra, solo instruments and voice, and many of them have been performed throughout the world. He also researched into folk music and improvisation.

He is sometimes grouped with Iannis Xenakis and Giacinto Scelsi, forming a Mediterranean school of composers.

His best known works include the Malta Suite of 1946, and his five movement Missa Mundi for organ of 1972 has been described as 'the organ's Rite of Spring'.

Camilleri, probably the best ambassador that Malta could ever hope for, died on 3 January 2009, aged 77, mourned across Malta with flags flown at half mast.

A selection of M&V articles about Charles Camilleri

Record Box. A Welcome Insight - Orchestral music by Charles Camilleri, reviewed by Patric Standford

Record box - A Mediterranean Soundworld. Camilleri on record, with Basil Ramsey

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