Published on Monday 9 October 2017

Yet another successful Notte Bianca has been accomplished with visitors flocking Valletta in the thousands for the largest festival in Malta to experience the quality entertainment provided. An estimate of more than 70,000 people visited the capital to attend 90 different events spanning all the arts sectors performed within the settings offered by the capital’s architectural heritage, across the four corners of the City.


During his visit of this annual event Dr Owen Bonnici - Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government, mentioned how Notte Bianca has become important in the country’s cultural calendar as it offers the general public the opportunity to enjoy Valletta. Minister Bonnici added that this continues to build up on the government’s priority to make culture more accessible by making artistic exhibitions and historical sites free of charge for everyone. Dr Bonnici thanked all artists and the staff who took part in this year’s edition and praised their work which is contributing to adding value to Malta’s cultural quality.

Artistic Director Sean Buhagiar explained how Notte Bianca continued developing on the work of past editions to ensure better quality in the projects.

It was our joy experiencing all those smiles around Valletta. Both artists and audiences had one of the best experiences this year. We worked hard and I thank my large team who put their heart in the work, to achieve a bigger success. This year, Notte Bianca saw a huge leap of quality – a festival which is much loved by the Maltese people. A heartfelt thanks to all!” concluded Mr Buhagiar.

This year Notte Bianca had two important collaborations – the La Fura dels Baus workshop led by the Spanish theatre group themselves, who worked with local artists and theatre practitioners, to deliver an interactive performance which required the use of an app. And there was also NOTTE BLANK, a collaboration which resulted in a number of musical and visual exhibitions set up in Fort St Elmo. Similar to last year, this year’s festival put an emphasis on commissioning digital media projects, such as Ajru, an interactive installation of several bird-like objects banding together in flight, a most impressive work which was set up in front of the National Library.

Notte Bianca was musically exceptional. Thanks to the festival, the Maltese public had the opportunity to listen once again to singer and songwriter Claire Tonna, who has been missing from the local music scene for two years, giving her rendition of a set of Leonard Cohen’s songs. There was also pianist Gabi Sultana, who is currently based in Belgium with the SPECTRA Ensemble, giving a recital of Philip Glass’ works to celebrate his eightieth birthday.

Sammy Bartolo’s fans could enjoy a jazz version of his songs on Victoria Gate thanks to Sur Jazz. The concert was performed by Dominic Galea, together with his band, singer Nadine Axisa and the UK Jazz drummer 2017, Clark Tracey.

Notte Bianca now will pass on the baton of the largest annual event to Valletta 2018 when next year Valletta will be given the European Capital of Culture title to continue showcasing Malta’s creative and cultural sector on a national scale.

Notte Bianca was organised by the Festivals Directorate with Arts Council Malta under the Ministry of Justice, Culture and Local Government, with the support of Valletta 2018 Foundation, Valletta Local Council, MSV Life, Farsons and PBS.