APS Bank is organising the third edition of the APS Summer Festival, with an exciting line-up of local and international performers. Jeremy Vassallo, CSR Manager within the Culture Department at APS Bank plc, tells us more about this event and its importance in celebrating arts and culture.

When and where is the APS Summer Festival being held?

This year the APS Summer Festival is taking place between July 20-31. Once again, we have returned to the University of Malta (UM), as we work together to create this cultural hub within the magical setting of the quadrangle under a canopy of trees. The venue worked perfectly last year, with ample parking, central location and easy accessibility, so we were glad that UM joined us once again on this venture.

Can you tell us more about the festival programme and who should attend?

The APS Summer Festival is a 12-day programme of content-rich performances appealing to a wider audience. Under the artistic direction of Annalisa Schembri, the Festival presents a line-up of acts and performances by numerous artists, including the popular local indie band Beangrowers, The New Victorians with an unplugged set including their latest album release, and Qamar–Qabar; a multidisciplinary performance into sights and sounds by composer Alex Vella Gregory, soprano Miriam Cauchi, and cellist Simon Abdilla Joslin, accompanied by original visual interventions created specifically for this Festival by Austin Camilleri. The festival is also hosting local bands Kantera, Cushion, ManaTapu, Skald and singer-songwriter Walter Micallef (returning back to the Island for this performance), and a musical theatre performance by l-Aħwa Bezzina featuring the songs of popular Maltese singer-songwriter Gaetano Kanta.

The Festival programme will have a dedicated evening to children, with sensory-friendly shows developed especially for three different groups of young audiences ranging from zero to three, a second show for children aged four to eight years old and a final show targeting children aged nine years. This brand-new show called Chromatopia has been created by Analise Mifsud and Mirko Galea, and the show has been produced by More or Less Theatre, which will feature the fun duo Sean Briffa and Jeremy Grech. Returning to the stage this year is the space given to upcoming talent and the community with artists from the University of Malta School of Performing Arts, MCAST Institute for the Creative Arts and content from Refugee Week Malta.

The APS Summer Festival is hosting international acts Puerto Flamenco, and a night of clownerie experience with Brazilian-Italian artists from Companhia Palma and Italian artist Giovanni Risola in the Otto Panzer Show.

The closing night will see a show curated in collaboration with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, featuring Mathias Camilleri with a circus act performance on the Chinese pole, accompanied by spoken word written specifically for the Festival by Gabriel Lia.

Why is it important for the Bank to organise such a festival?

The Festival creates a platform for established and emerging artists showcasing their talents and encouraging cultural participation. APS Bank has been supporting arts and culture for many years. Through the Festival, we work to co-create and co-develop entertaining and engaging experiences, and it is another opportunity for us to really live our purpose and deliver our vision as ‘the’ community bank in Malta. Through this Festival the Bank is creating jobs in the creative industry this Summer. A series of workshops and masterclasses for creative practitioners will be hosted by the festival providing another form of support and artistic development for the creative community in Malta.

Why should people attend the APS Summer Festival?

This year the Festival is one of the many events being held, however we truly believe that this Festival is offering a curated summer experience. It is supporting artists who have been heavily impacted due to the pandemic during the past two years. In the longer term, we believe that by sustaining the Festival, we will create an ecosystem of creatives to come together and opportunities for diverse audiences to engage with the arts, while encouraging the development of talent to professional standards. Sustainability is also at the heart of the Festival, as we are working with our suppliers to follow standards in minimising the impact of the Festival, without impinging on the quality.

The APS Summer Festival is brought to you by APS Bank plc, supported by the University of Malta, Atlas Insurance PCC Limited and Kinnie. Tickets are selling fast! For the full line-up of the APS Summer Festival 2022 and to purchase your tickets visit apsbank.com.mt/aps-summer-festival-2022

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