MPO Academy springs into action!

MPO Academy springs into action!
12th April 2022 MPO Marketing

MPO Academy springs into action!

Since its launch in October 2021, MPO Academy, seeking to take Maltese musical education to the next level, has already had a fruitfully diverse few months for students and tutors alike.

Boasting a teaching staff featuring European Union Youth Orchestra (EUYO) Double Bass Principal Sofia Bianchi Maester, former EUYO Principal Viola Joana Nunes and American violinist Sonja Larson, the full-time tutors are joined by a number of MPO Principals.

From workshops and concerts to specialised, individual and chamber music training, students continue to further their development, particularly as orchestral musicians. Joana Nunes, one of three MPO Academy full-time tutors, shared insight on her pedagogical approach, stating the importance of “giving students all the tools necessary to achieve autonomy faster and feel the urge to play music as the beautiful art that it is…” Bach and Beyond – A Flute and Piano Recital featured as part of the MPO Concert Season 21/22. Academy student Clara Galea was joined by Malta Youth Orchestra flutist Nicole Spiteri in a recital featuring works from Bach to Dutilleux, showcasing the instrument’s versatility, and the musicians’ talent. The event also put into practice the chamber performance training which is part of the Academy’s curriculum. “The training of Malta’s young musicians is vitally important to the Maltese creative community. My work is dedicated to nurturing these future professional musicians and teachers,” said Sonja Larson, another MPO Academy tutor.

“My inspiration is that educational model that seeks the musical growth of the student, emphasizing both technique and artistic execution,” echoes Sofía Bianchi Maestre. Instrumental training is also a priority for the MPO Academy. MPO Principal Conductor Sergey Smbatyan led a violin masterclass with a number of up-and-coming violinists. This was also followed by a percussion workshop with Fernando Arias, timpani player and regular collaborator of the MPO.

The Academy’s vision delineated in the launch is enabled within a framework providing the opportunity to further musical studies. As such, the initiative also aims to bolster the number of local musicians joining the ranks of the orchestra, enhancing the MPO’s position as a cultural ambassador for Malta.

“There is an extremely high degree of raw talent and potential among Malta’s young musicians, and I am very happy that, thanks to the MPO Academy, we are able to support them to fully realise this amazing potential, both for their benefit, as well as for Malta’s cultural heritage”, said Konstantin Ishkhanov, President of the European Foundation for Support of Culture.

The MPO Academy is presented with the European Foundation for Support of Culture (EUFSC) as its main partner, being supported by the Ministry for Education and the Ministry for National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government. More information may be found on