Matthew Schembri has completed a four-year Bachelor of Music at Prins Claus Conservatorium in Groningen, the Netherlands. As main instrument he studied organ with Theo Jellema and Erwin Wiersinga, and as second instrument he studied piano with Nata Tsvereli. He held weekly organ lessons on the famous Schnitger organ in the Martinikerk in Groningen.
The course covered traditional music theory subjects such as harmony and solfége, ensemble playing, continuo-playing on the harpsichord and conducting. It also included entrepreneurial subjects such as organising, promoting and presenting events, formulating budget plans and preparing programmes.
During his studies Schembri had teaching practice at the Vrijdag: muziek, theater en beeldende kunstcentrum mentored by Leonore Lubb.
He also took part in masterclasses by well-known organists such as Michel Bouvard, Wolfgang Zerer, Edoardo Bellotti and Paolo Crivellaro.
He also played in several concerts, solo or with ensembles and choirs on several instruments.
Earlier this year, Schembri was an adviser for a publication issued as part of the ‘Schnitger meets…’ activities celebrating 50 years of Stichting Groningen Orgelland and the 300th anniversary of Arp Schnitger’s death. He has performed his final exam on the Schnitger organ in Martinikerk on June 24. He played works by J. S. Bach, M. Weckmann, A. van Noordt, C. Saint-Saens, J. Jongen and J. Welmers.
Schembri’s studies were supported by a State-funded arts scholarship awarded in 2015.