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Phillip Scott
Fanfare, March 2016

All the musicians on this CD relish their roles and perform with considerable panache, especially the concerto soloists; the sound is bright and close in the Naxos house style. While it only tells part of the composer’s story, this disc is bound to bring a good deal of enjoyment. © 2016 Fanfare Read complete review



Jack Sullivan
American Record Guide, January 2016

These pieces are amiable and tuneful, with an “easy listening” ambiance close to pop, though the forms are classical.

The Malta Philharmonic, superbly recorded in Valletta, plays with pizzazz and transparency: Naxos presents us with yet another undervalued composer and orchestra. Could we hear more Camilleri, please? © 2016 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Bob McQuiston
Classical Lost and Found, November 2015

PB is then tunefully explored giving rise to a couple of attractive melodies. It also serves as the basis for a colorful coda that ends the suite and this exceptional disc festively.

This disc is an ideal introduction to Charles’ music, and sweeps away the scanty competition currently out there! © 2015 Classical Lost and Found Read complete review



David Barker
MusicWeb International, September 2015

Production quality and performances are uniformly excellent. If you like well-crafted tuneful music, with no great pretensions, then you will enjoy this. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Rob Barnett
MusicWeb International, September 2015

All the works here benefit from a full-on recording with particular prominence accorded to the piano. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, September 2015

Over the years the record industry has heightened the international awareness of the Maltese composer, Charles Camilleri, this new addition being most welcome. He grew up in appalling conditions as the island was under constant siege in the Second World War, though that did not prevent him becoming proficient as a pianist, accordionist and composer. The war at an end, he then emigrated to Australia, before arriving in London where he earned a living as an arranger, composer and conductor. In 1958 he left the UK eventually arriving in Canada where he returned to studying composition. His globe-trotting did not end there, though his need to return ‘home’ took him back to Malta in 1983 where he enjoyed an ‘Indian Summer’ completing a library of compositions. The present release opens with the First Piano Concerto, ‘Mediterranean’, composed in 1948, when he was just 17, and owes much to Rachmaninov. Though the orchestral parts add weight to the dramatic moments, the work concentrates on the keyboard, the first movement decorated with charming filigree. The second is slow and reflective in character; the third eventually bringing Mediterranean sun to shine on the fast and happy conclusion. The solo part keeps the nimble fingers of the Maltese pianist, Charlene Farraguia, very busy in a most likeable performance. Two years earlier, aged fifteen, the Malta Suite shows his early ability to write light music, the four movements conveying picture postcards of his homeland. The Accordion Concerto comes from his mature years, the orchestral part now much more fulsome than in the Piano Concerto, and includes a long introduction to the first movement. Until the hyperactive finale of the work it does not explore the performer’s technique, but rather uses the accordion as part of the music’s texture. My first acquaintance with the Malta Philharmonic is one of admiration. © 2015 David’s Review Corner





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