About 3,000 animal puppets, 18 local band clubs, 360 dancers, hundreds of people from various Maltese and Gozitan communities, children, elderly, persons with special needs and many others, will animate the streets of Valletta during Sfilata fil-Kapitali (Parade in the Capital), on Saturday 27th October from 2pm onwards … and you’re invited to join them!

This show will include several surprises for the audience, in the form of music, dance, short performances and storytelling, with the participation of renowned personalities including those from Min Imissu and Klassi Għalina as well as Kinetic Dance Academy.

At 2pm, come to St George’s Square to build your own animal puppet, and then, join in the fun in the streets of Valletta! The show will run until late, when it reaches its peak with a great party at Triton Square from 9.30pm onwards.

This takes place following two music-theatre performances of Orfeo & Majnun, being held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre on the 19th and 20th October at 8pm.

This was announced by Valletta 2018 Foundation Chairman Jason Micallef during a press conference held today.

Orfeo & Majnun is a theatrical representation that combines two love stories together – the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice and the Persian story of Layla and Majnun – through various artistic forms including singing, dancing, storytelling, as well as the movement of large animal puppets. The narrative weaves together the Maltese, English and Arabic languages, while the music of Dick van der Harst, Moneim Adwan and Howard Moody, combines both oriental and western styles.

The animal puppets were created during workshops held over the past months within communities across Malta and Gozo. These puppets will animate the performances at the Mediterranean Conference Centre, and will then roam the streets and main squares of the city at the parade in the Capital during the following weekend. During this colourful activity, the participants who built these mythic animals will be animating and propelling them around Valletta, accompanied by several band clubs, musicians, dancers, and many others.

In fact, the Orfeo & Majnun project is the fruit of the creativity, vision and contribution of several communities across Malta and Gozo, including school children, the elderly, band club associations, youth sections within these same organisations, Scout groups, and many others. The workshops were, and still are, open to everyone, regardless of level of experience or ability.

The puppets, who will give life to the theatrical performance by creating shadows on the stage, are a very old theatrical form, with roots in Asian cultures. This ancient art form eventually evolved to digital animated movies as we know them today. The audience can expect many pleasant surprises from these puppets during the show at the Mediterranean Conference Centre!

Orfeo & Majnun deals with themes of love, loss and longing as well as the past and the future. These themes will be retold in various forms by participants from all walks of life, who have been preparing for this performance for several months, during workshops held. The workshops introduced the stories and themes of Orfeo & Majnun to the participating communities, so they develop links with the project to enable them to participate in the collaborative creative process.

Orfeo & Majnun in Malta is also a collaboration with various entities in Europe, and in fact, is also being held in several European countries. Each country adapts the performance according to its unique cultural elements, including language. The project has already been completed successfully in Belgium and France last June, and after Malta, Vienna in Austria and Krakow in Poland are next, producing this project during 2019.

Parliamentary Secretary for Consumer Protection and Valletta 2018 Dr Deo Debattista explained that language is the key to culture, which is a universal language in itself. The message of Valletta 2018 is precisely on the importance of diversity in cultures, and this event will truly reflect this message.

Those who attend Sfilata fil-Kapitali may benefit from special rates when using sustainable means of transport provided by Nextbike and Tallinja Bikes. Use the code 863386 when renting a Nextbike, for a journey of 60 minutes to or from the city free of charge. The code can be used twice, on two separate trips. Tallinja Bikes will also be available for travel within the city, at a discount of 50% during Sfilata fil-Kapitali. Terms and conditions apply.

Join hundreds of other people in this magical activity, on the 19th or 20th of October at the Mediterranean Conference Centre for the music-theatre performance, and on the 27th October in Valletta for Sfilata fil-Kapitali, from 2pm onwards!

To participate in workshops, send an email to [email protected]. Visit tickets.valletta2018.org to get your tickets for the theatrical performance of Orfeo & Majnun.

Orfeo & Majnun is organised by Valletta 2018 in collaboration with La Monnaie (BEL), Le Festival International d’Art Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence (FRA), Konzerthausgesellschaft Wiener (AUT), Krakowskie Biuro Festiwalowe (POL) Operadagen Rotterdam (NLD) and Santa Maria da Feira (PRT).

Orfeo & Majnun is co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union.

Valletta 2018 Premium Partners: General Soft Drinks Co. Ltd., Coca Cola, Bavaria and Bank of Valletta