The Maltese Islands Festival is set to return for a second, longer edition this December, with applications already open.

The popular festival, which first took place in 2016, saw over 180 solo performances and 435 individual performances within groups taking place at St James Cavalier last December – and numbers are expected to exceed that this year.

“The first edition of The Maltese Islands Festival was a huge success with lots of brilliant performers of all ages taking part in a vast range of categories across the disciplines of dance, drama, singing and music,” says festival manager Cathy Lawlor. “The international adjudicators – who flew to Maltese especially for the festival – were very impressed by the island’s high performance standards.”

The festival will now be back from 13-17 December – and the organisers stress that this year’s will be bigger and better, with a larger venue especially for group numbers, and even more categories.

“Having reviewed the structure used in the first year, some categories have been removed and others added in,” continues Ms Lawlor. “These include Original Song Writing, Duo/Trio/Quartet Music, more Musical Theatre, Spanish Ballroom, Ballet Pointe Work, Opera, split categories for Adult and Children’s Choir, a Pop category, as well as sections for Brass, Woodwind and Strings instruments. Several categories will also be open to broader age groups.”

Once again, international adjudicators will judge each category, personalised feedback will be provided to each participant, and awards will be given to the best performers.

Now early bird applications are open online, with the final deadline set for 6 November. A full list of performance categories is available on the website at

“So, whether you love playing the violin, performing hip hop dancing or are part of a choir… and whether you’re four-years-old or an adult – there’s a category for you!” Cathy adds. “We look forward to seeing you at the festival.”

The Maltese Islands Festival is being organised in collaboration with Spazju Kreattiv and is endorsed by European Capital of Culture Valletta 2018.

maltese islands festival