Mro. Paul Schembri
Mro. Paul Schembri M.I.S.M.M.I.W.M was born in Ħal-Luqa on 13 February 1931, son of Joseph and Maria Carmela, nee Costa. His parents were both great musicians, his father a violinist and his grandfather was First baritone in the Royal Theatre. From his childhood, he showed great attachment to music and began his first musical studies with the Għaqda Mużikali Sant’Andrija Band Club of his native village. Mro.Schembri made appreciable progress, and at 12 years of age he was playing in public the difficult composition, Un Concerto Per Euphonium. He continued his musical studies under the advanced conductors Mro. Anton Muscat Azzopardi and Profs. Henry Galea.
He joined the King’s Own Band and later became its soloist on Euphonium and later, the assistant director. Besides conductor and director of the Soċjeta Mużikali Banda Vittoriosana San Lawrenz and Għaqda Mużikali Sant’Andrija, he was also Maestro with the Għaqda Mużikali Melita Band of Msida, Duke of Connaught of Birkirkara, Għaqda Mużikali Santa Marija of Qrendi and the Royal Air Force Band (Malta). On several occasions, he also directed British and Scottish bands, including Musselborough Trades Brass Band of East Lothian, Scotland.
Mro. Schembri is considered as a skilful conductor, as well as one of the best composers of his times. He has over 200 compositions, including band marches and funeral marches, waltzes, symphonies and hymns. Among these, one has to say that the Fantasia Centenaria, the symphony Chiara, the overture Canena, the symphonic march Deborah and the sonatina La Tromba Magica stand out. Mro Schembri’s compositions are also found abroad, such as in the UK, Canada and Australia.
In 1982, he participated in a Competition in London the the Fantasia Centenaria where he won the Diploma of Merit. It must be said that this Fantasy was singled out by Mro Andrew Lloyd Webber, who was part of the jury. Mro Schembri ended his tenure at the club during the year 2015, due to health reasons.