Principal Conductor: Brian Schembri
One of the most brilliant musicians to emerge from Malta, Brian Schembri started his music studies with his father Carmelo Schembri, becoming the youngest ever to obtain the Licentiate of the Royal Schools of Music (London). He later graduated in piano and conducting at the Kiev and Moscow “Tchaikowsky” Conservatories studying with A. Snegiriov, S. Dorensky, R. Kofman and G.Rozhdestvensky.
While still very actively performing as a concert pianist, he started working as assistant conductor with Michel Plasson and Emmanuel Krivine. Eventually dedicating most of his time to conducting, he became Chief Conductor of the OPF Orchestra and Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa and more recently, Music Conductor of the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra.
Brian Schembri has been awarded the Malta Cultural Award and the Medal for Service to republic.
“With Schembri we are in the presence of an eloauent musician in whom is combined humanity and high art, whose music-making is compassionate, yielding, grand… His way of holding a piece together, his shaping and masking of a composer’s joins, his generation of dramatic tension and repose, reminded me of passed greats, of other worlds long ago.”
(Sunday Times of Malta, Ates Orga)
“…as soon as the curtain rises we are sure of success with Brian Schembri’s clear and secure conducting …”
“… Brian Schembri with his nervous baton, his guiding gestures full of complicity and warmth, deserves a general bravo all for himself …”
(La Tribune Le Progress, France).
Resident Conductor : Michael Laus
Michael Laus started his musical studies at an early age. He successfully completed the Licentiate of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music under the tuition of Cynthia Turner. In 1979 he was awarded a scholarship from the Italian Cultural institute which enabled him to continue his studies in piano, harpsichord, composition, and conducting at the Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi of Milan, where he graduated in 1982. He later participated in master classes in conducting given by George Manahan in the United States and Vladimir Delman in Bologna.
He has appeared as Music Director of a large number of operatic productions in Malta, at the Berne State Theatre and in Oviedo
Michael Laus, principal Conductor of Malta’s national orchestra between 1991 and 2014, has been invited to guest conduct several other prestigious orchestras.
He has appeared on Rai 3, France 3 and Mezzo television channels. He is Associate Professor in Music Performance at the University of Malta.
Comments press :
“Performances of all three works are full of vitality …” (The Penguin Guide to Compact Discs on Charles Camilleri: The Piano Concertos)
“Laus infuses the Maltese and Mediterranean Dances with a bewitching rubato, and underlines the surprising Russian inflexions of the latter to strong theatrical effect.” (Ates Orga in BBC Music Magazine)
“Suffice in to say that … Laus drives the primal music onward to a powerful climax.” (Joanne Carpenter in CD Review)