Carmelo Baldacchino

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On Saturday 4 January, Sam Mifsud wrote the following eulogy on his own Facebook wall:

Mro Carmelo Baldacchino - ( A Father And A Good Friend )

By now many of you know that (my father-in-law) Mro Carmelo Baldacchino passed away on Friday 3rd January 2014 to go and join his wife Carmen in heaven.

Before he died,Carmelo told us that he was so thankful to God for his long life of 97 years where he saw his big family growing. His wish was that he will have a death without suffering and God granted his wish !

Carmelo emigrated to Australia with his family in 1955.

Carmelo to me was more than 'father-in-law' he was very close friend, sharing most same interests manly MUSIC.

He was our 1st group's ( The Sheratons ) manager during the early years 1960's of my brother Laurie and I involvement in music in Australia.

Later on in years he helped us also with The Mifsud Brothers Recordings.

Since his children were not much involved in music I used to spent hours talking about all kind of Maltese music, knowing that he LOVED sharing his past experience involvements with bands mainly The Beland Band - Zejtun in Malta. I did encourage him to be involved in Maltese Entertainment here in Australia especially in Maltese music when Maltese Entertainers came to visit us like Maltese Singer Debbie Xerri , (fr) David Azzopardi, Enzo Gusman etc.

We also worked to put together new musical materials such as The Double CD with 13 'Funereal Marches' all of his compositions in 2008 , Interviews for local and Maltese TV/Radio Stations, DVD's etc.

In 1981 he was asked to conduct local Italian Band (G. Verdi Concerto Bandistico ). I used to go with him most of the times to this band venues. He directed the band till his retirement 16 year later.

He composed huge numbers of music scores, like 2 Symphonies, about 80 Band Marches, 50 Funeral Marches and few Ave Maria's. All these were giving to various band clubs manly the ones that he was involved with while in Malta.

Beside all this, Carmelo never ceased to learn new things, I introduced him to the modern communication - The Internet, he LOVED IT !

We used to discuss lots of internet programs and he used to ask me very intelligent questions about certain programs. He loved keeping in touch with his family members and friends locally and overseas especially on FaceBook.

I'm proud to say that a survey was done over the net and we discovered that Carmelo would have been the 'Eldest Maltese FaceBook User' in MALTA.

Everybody couldn't believe that a 97 years person could keep up with the modern technology and they all admired his willingness to learn !!

I'll never forget the closeness I felt with him at all times , always listening to you and ready to lend a hand and to give advices as A FATHER AND A FRIEND

His Funeral Mass it's going to be held on Wednesday 8th January 2014 at St Michael's Parish Church, 58 Orwell Street Blacktown NSW 2148 Australia at 10.30am ( Malta time 0030hrs)

We thank GOD for your long life with us.

We are going to miss you and you'll never be forgotten !!


On the same day, the following appeared on the Beland Band Club website:

The Beland Band Club is mourning the demise of its former bandmaster Mro Carmelo Baldacchino, who was at the helm of the band between 1946 and 1955. Mro Baldacchino, who resided in Sydney (Australia), passed away peacefully on Friday 3 January at the age of 97.

Born on the 1st of November 1916 at Zejtun, Mro Carmelo Baldacchino started his first musical steps at the age of 14 with the Beland Band, playing the trumpet under the direction of Mro Carmelo Scicluna and his assistant Giuseppi Spiteri. At the age of 17 he was assisting the same Spiteri to set up a new band in Hal Ghaxaq, what today we know as Banda Santa Marija. In 1939 he joined the Royal Malta Artillery Band (RMA) and played as Solo Trumpet for 12 years. Mro Caruana studied music with Mro Joseph Stivala and became director of St.Mary Band of Hal Ghaxaq in 1943. Two years later he was appointed director of the De Paul Band, a position which he occupied for 10 years.

In 1946 Mro Carmelo Baldacchino succeeded Mro Carmelo Scicluna as Bandmaster of the Beland Band, what Mro Baldacchino calls "the culimnation of my dreams". He directed the Band all over the island in a very successful period. Until 1955 when Mro Baldacchino and his family emigrated to Australia.

In 1965 Mro Baldacchino re-formed the Railway Band in New South Wales. In 1981 Mro Baldacchino was appointed bandmaster of the Italian Band in NSW, which he directed for 16 years until his retirement.

Despite his advanced age, Mro Baldacchino made costant use of modern communication media, particularly facebook to keep abreast with all developments and events of the Beland Band. He was also a very active user of this page, posting his comments on several of our news updates and photoalbums.

The Beland Band Administrative Committee, bandsmen and active members would like to extend their deepest condolences to the Baldacchino family.

Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. Amen.

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