Published on Wednesday 14 August 2019

On Saturday 17th August, the curtain will be raised on the Cittadella Arts Festival in Gozo. The festival, which runs until the 13th September, is being organized by DCapitals Big Band in collaboration with the Ministry for Gozo, the Malta Arts Council (Gozo Cultural Support Programme), the Malta Tourism Authority and Heritage Malta.

The arts festival will open with a spectacular concert entitled “Beat It: A Big Band Show” by DCapitals Big Band and a big band from Czechia under the name of Big ‘O’ Band, special guests for the festival.

“Festivals of this calibre continue to put the island of Gozo on the international map of cultural events and raise Gozo’s profile with whoever visits the island,” said Hon. Justyne Caruana, Minister for Gozo.

Hon. Caruana reminded those present that at the world’s leading travel fair, the ITB in Berlin, the island of Gozo won the Best of Communities & Culture Award – further proof that the investment made by the Ministry for Gozo to strengthen our tangible and intangible cultural heritage is bearing fruit. For this reason, the Ministry for Gozo will continue to invest strongly in the cultural activities that are held every week. So much so, that close on the heels of the success of the Gozo Cultural Support Scheme, run by the Ministry for Gozo in conjunction with the Arts Council Malta, it was decided to increase funding for the second edition and extend it to more activities. Among the beneficiaries there is DCapitals Big Band who have presented the Cittadella Arts Festival.

The Minister for Tourism, Hon. Konrad Mizzi, said that tourism in Gozo is very encouraging and government will continue striving to enable more Gozitans to open and run their business in Gozo, including those related to events and other activities that are crucial to Gozo and make it a different destination. Hon. Mizzi also said that he is also very pleased that this week will be witnessing a fantastic event in Gozo together with DCapitals Big Band, that will be hosting forty musicians from Czechia who will be coming over to Malta to take part in a musical concert featuring also some top class Gozitan singers and musicians. Hon. Mizzi also said that this is just one of various other events happening in Gozo that will offer ever more opportunities for people to attend. The Minister urged tourists, the Maltese, as well as Gozitans to attend the concert where they will be able to witness a show of the highest calibre, with the stunning Cittadella acting as backdrop.

Heritage Malta Chairman, Dr Anton Refalo, quoted EU statistics that show cultural heritage as a major factor that influences the decision of a majority of tourists in choosing their holiday destination. Dr Refalo said that a festival such as the one being organized by DCapitals, with the contribution of Heritage Malta on local and national levels, will definitely bring our cultural heritage closer to the man in the street. The Chairman of Heritage Malta also reminded those present that the necessary arrangements have already been made so that entry to all museums in the Cittadella will be free of charge between 7th and 8th September.

The musical director of DCapitals Band, Maestro George Apap, said that this festival is definitely the biggest project ever embarked upon by DCapitals Big Band in the five years since its foundation. “The single concert we had last year is now being extended to a festival, spread over a number of weeks with diverse cultural activities that will attract a greater number of visitors and enthusiasts to our island, especially to the Cittadella.”

The calendar of activities of this arts festival vary from musical concerts, educational activities, theatre, art exhibition, talks and other cultural activities. Apart from the concert to be held in the moat of the Cittadella, other activities will include: masterclasses by international tutors for trumpet, trombone and saxophone students; exhibition of works by artist Kevin Sciberras; a play in English, ‘The Bench’, written by Angelo Camilleri; a debutante concert; a musical educational activity for 5 to 10 year olds; a talk about the art and treasures found in the Gozo Cathedral by Kenneth Cauchi; and a walk around the streets of the Cittadella together with historian Dr Joseph Bezzina.

For the official programme or more details you may visit the official Facebook page: or send an email to