Festival Artistic Board
Artistic Director of the European Foundation for Support of Culture
Over the past twenty years, Maltese conductor Alan Chircop directed several international orchestras and appeared in various theatres, concert halls and festivals in many different countries. Among others, he conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall and Westminster Central Hall in London, the London Concert Orchestra, the Sofia Philharmonic – National Orchestra of Bulgaria, the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Macedonia, Armenian State Symphony Orchestra and the National Chamber Orchestra of Armenia, the State Orchestra ‘Academy of Soloists’ of Kazakhstan, L’Orchestra Citta’ di Ravenna and L’Orchestra Sinfonica Duchi d’Acquaviva(Italy), the Royal Oman Symphony Orchestra, the Leopoli State Symphony Orchestra (Ukraine), L'Orchestre Lyrique de Region Avignon-Provence (France), the Karlovy Vary Symphony Orchestra (Czech Republic), the Mihail Jora Philharmonic of Bacau (Romania), the Karelia State Philharmonic Orchestra, the Kislovodsk - Mineralnye Vody State Symphony Orchestra and the Sochi Symphony Orchestra (Russia); the Pleven Philharmonic Orchestra (Bulgaria); the Westsächsische Philharmonie and the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Symphony Orchestra Leipzig (Germany), the Camerata con Cor(d)e of Belgium and the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra.
Alan Chircop’s repertoire is very wide ranging and apart from an extensive symphonic and concerto repertoire, he has directed several opera productions, contemporary music premieres and also different genres arranged for symphonic orchestras.
In 1993 he obtained the Diplome de Fin d’Etudes in pianoforte with distinction at the Conservatoire Regional de Musique in Lyon (France). He pursued his studies at the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Music Academy in Leipzig (Germany) obtaining two Masters Degrees: in Pianoforte under the tutorship of Prof. Christoph Taubert (1994-2001) and Orchestral Direction with Prof. Gert Bahner (1997-2003). He also followed a one-year specialization course in Orchestral Direction with Prof. Uros Lajovic at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna (Austria).
Alan Chircop was also the Founder and Principal of the Euro Academy of Music and Arts in Malta; Artistic Director of the Virtuoso Classics Concert Series; and Artistic Director of the Renaissance Cultural Foundation and Principal of the Visual & Performing Arts Schools in Malta.
Since 2014, he is the Artistic Director of the European Foundation for Support of Culture, organising many festivals, competitions and events around the world and often serves as jury member of international music competitions. He is also the artistic director of New Names Malta - National Music Competition.
Franco Panozzo was born in Italy. Very much in love with music since his early years, he completed his piano studies at the Conservatory of Trento, followed immediately after by a master in Musicology at the University of Bologna. In 1987 he has created AMC -Artists Management Company, an international office which pioneering intention was, and still is, to handle the personal management of a restricted number of international artists. Since then he has been the general manager of Grigory Sokolov, Ton Koopman, Sergej Krylov, Mario Brunello and Arcadi Volodos.
Latvian composer Georgs Pelēcis is born in Riga (1947). After finishing the musical college of his native town he graduated from the class of composition in the Moscow Conservatoire with the famous Armenian composer Aram Kchachaturian. Later he graduated from the same conservatoire as musicologist with the master dissertation devoted to the Nethterlands composer of the 15-th century Johannes Ockeghem and then - the doctor dissertation about counterpoint of Palestrina.
Since 1970 till present Georgs Pelēcis is profesor of counterpoint and fugue at the Latvian Academy of music. Many years he works in two fields as musicologist and composer. In the first sphere he has written a number of essaies about music or Renessaince, baroque, classicism and art of 20 century. In the 1994 he has got the medal of International Palestrina Centre in Rome. In the second sphere he is author of great number or pieces for piano, choir, orchestra and different ensembles which are perforned in many concerts and festivals all over the world.
One of the most typical works or Georgs Pelēcis is CONCERTO FOR SYMPHONIC ORCHESTRA ENDORPHIN MUSIC (in three movements).
Born in the historic city of Krakow, Elżbieta Penderecka is one of Poland’s leading cultural figures, well known and respected for her charity work and her contribution to the arts. Since 1965 she manages the affairs of her husband Krzysztof Penderecki. She has fostered the establishment of many musical festivals on various continents and organized concerts for world’s leading musicians, including Lord Yehudi Menuhin and Mstislav Rostropovich. She chaired the artistic board of Krakow 2000 – The European Capital of Culture. In 1997 Penderecka established the Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival, which is now recognized as one of the major festivals of classical music in Europe. This annual event attracts to Warsaw thousands of music lovers every spring. Recognized for its outstanding marketing and educational strategies, the festival is also hugely popular among young people. Education and talent fostering play an important part in Penderecka’s work and she has helped many young musicians in launching their careers. Elżbieta Penderecka has been distinguished with many medals and awards. Together with her husband she has established The Krzysztof Penderecki European centre for Music in Lusławice near Krakow, with a grand concert hall and a top class campus, with the purpose of popularizing classical music and creating training opportunities for young music professionals.
Principal conductor of the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra (ASSO)
Armenian conductor Sergey Smbatyan is the artistic director and principal conductor of the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra (ASSO), previously being the State Youth Orchestra of Armenia. He founded the orchestra when he was only 18 years old. Under his leadership, ASSO received invitations to internationally renowned festivals and major venues.
Highlights of his career include performances with the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra, the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra in Moscow, the DSO Berlin, Dresden Philharmonic, the Warsaw Philharmonic at the 19th Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival in Warsaw, the Korean Chamber Orchestra with the world renowned actor John Malkovich at the Seoul Arts centre. The collaboration with the Korean Chamber Orchestra continued later in Moscow with soloist Pinchas Zukerman, in Boston and at Carnegie Hall in New York. Recent highlights also included his debut with the London Symphony Orchestra and the “LSO Discovery” concert. He conducted the joint gala concert with the renowned artist Maxim Vengerov at Windsor Castle for HRH Prince Charles “Princes Trust” event. After the great success the concert was repeated at Buckingham Palace in 2011 where he conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra again.
In April 2017, the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra, headed by conductor Sergey Smbatyan, performed within the framework of the Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival in Poland. The same month Smbatyan also made his Munich debut with Munich Symphony Orchestra.
In 2015, Sergey Smbatyan received the “Order of Arts and Letters of France” granted by the Minister of Culture and Communication of France.
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