Minister for the National Heritage, the Arts, and Local Government Owen Bonnici announced that 30 different band clubs benefitted from the total amount of €160,000 through a fund aimed at strengthening the cultural work done by band clubs, which is administered by Arts Council Malta (ACM).
The Minister lauded the initiative and highlighted the government’s commitment to preserving and promoting community-based culture. He emphasised the significance of community engagement through arts and culture and stressed that local feasts present an excellent opportunity for the community to actively participate in diverse art forms while upholding the traditional essence that bestows our islands with a unique identity.
“Band clubs play an important community role, creating a sense of belonging and serving as a point of entry and engagement with the arts. Their activities are ongoing and while they focus to teach music to children and young people, they also organise cultural and traditional activities, which reach a peak during their main activity – the village feasts. The buildings in which they are housed, too, often contain objects of historical value and are of historical significance themselves,” Minister Bonnici concluded.
Mary Ann Cauchi, Director Funding and Strategy at ACM, echoed the Arts Council Malta’s steadfast dedication to this scheme, recognising the pivotal role of band club societies. “Through these funds we are contributing in nurturing musical culture, safeguarding and enhancing cultural traditions, and organising artistic endeavours within the community,” stated Ms Cauchi.
This scheme operates in collaboration with the Għaqda Nazzjonali Każini tal-Banda, facilitated by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Council and the Association, aiming to strengthen and streamline their partnership. Dr Noel Camilleri, President of the Għaqda Nazzjonali Każini tal-Banda, also addressed the press conference, underscoring the importance of this joint effort.