Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae

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Maria Mater Gratiae Żabbar

The Maria Mater Gratiae Phiharmonic Society knows its origin to the initative of Francesco Saverio Briffa who in 1883 formed the first band known as the ‘Societa Filamonica del Żabbar’. Mro Ġiuseppe Micallef, nicknamed ‘Il-Baqrambu’ was the first band master. But trouble soon ensued as some members wanted to substitute the band master and founded another society. Briffa changed the name of the orginal society to ‘Societa Filarmonica Maria Mater Gratiae’, confirming Micallef as the band master.

Other band masters such as Mro. Paċifico Scicluna and Mro. Lorenzo Gonzi subsequently made this band very popular endowing it with new compositions. During this time, under the Presidency of Ġiuseppe Calleja, the Society commissioned the popular statue representing Victorious Malta, which has since then become synonymous with the Society’s Band.

During the decicated presidency of Dr. G. Agius Muscat, a set of new instruments was purchased, and blessed by Cardinal Lepicier. After the Second World War when Mr. A. Felice was elected President, the Society evolved the theatrial productions so popular before the war. So much so that a new theatre was built which was called Blue Arena. During the Festivities marking the Coronation of the Icon of Our Lady of Divine Grace, the Band premiered a new anthem, composed by the then band master Mro. Joseph Abela Scolaro with lyrics by Fr. Mattew Sultana.

After ten years under the direction of Mro. Joseph Abela Scolaro, the band’s baton was passed on to Mro. Carmelo Caruana who relinquished the post after eleven years to be succeeded by Mro. Orazio Cachia. During thsi period, the Society also had various president with such prominent persons as Espedito Catania, Francis Scicluna and Joseph C. Attard.

The eighties also proved to be fruitful for the Society. Importance was duty given to young members and the female element. The Society distinguished itself in extrenal decorations, especially during Christmas. The vigorous presidency of Mr. V. Magri proved fruitul to reinvigorate the Society and ead it into the new millennium. On the musical side, the Society employed the services of a Young band master, Mro. Raymond Sciberras who is renowed for his charming compositions. He continued to enrich the Society’s Archives with classical musical works, rendering hom one of the best and most prolific composers of our times.

Above all the Society always took pride in the members who, under the divine gudance of Our Lady of Grace, always worked hard to keep the Society’s name esteemed by all.


Band Masters

No Band Master From Until
01 Mro. Ġiuseppe Micallef 1883 1889
02 Mro. Carmelo Abela Scolaro 1889 1891
03 Mro. Ġiuseppe Micallef 1891 1893
04 Mro. Bernando Costa 1893 1895
05 Mro. Ġiuseppe Micallef 1895 1899
06 Mro. Spiridione Zammit 1899 1903
07 Mro. Paċifico Scicluna 1903 1906
08 Mro. Salvatore Galea Abela 1906 1908
09 Mro. Lorenzo Gonzi 1908 1913
10 Mro. Paċifico Scicluna 1913 1918
11 Mro. Lorenzo Gonzi 1918 1928
12 Mro. Paċifico Scicluna 1928 1943
13 Mro. Emanuel Camilleri 1943 1944
14 Mro. Paċifico Scicluna 1944 1951
15 Mro. Joseph Abela Sciclua 1951 1961
16 Mro. William James Worley 1961 1963
17 Mro. Carmelo Caruana 1963 1974
18 Mro. Orazio Cachia 1974 1981
19 Mro. Anġelo Pace 1981 1985
20 Mro. Ugo Buhagiar 1985 1990
21 Mro. Raymond Sciberras 1990


No Presidents From Until
01 Francesco Savero Briffa 1883 1898
02 Giuseooe Pace Spadaro 1895 1900
03 Francesco Savero Briffa 1900 1916
04 Giuseppe Calleja 1916 1921
05 Ġiovanni Corrado 1921 1924
06 Giuseppe Calleja 1924 1925
07 Dr.Giuseppe Ellul M.D. 1925 1927
08 Aronne Gulia 1927
09 Dr. Giuseppe Agius Muscat M.D. 1927 1943
10 Salvatore Astarita 1943
11 Dr. Giuseppe Agius Muscat M.D. 1943
12 Arturo R. Felice 1946 1946
13 Espedito Catania 1953 1953
14 Victor Cauchi 1957 1957
15 Salvatore F.Sciberras 1959 1959
16 Espedito Catania 1961 1961
17 John Debono 1962 1962
18 Francis J.Scicluna 1962 1962
19 Espedito Catania 1974 1974
20 Alfred R. Scicluna 1976 1979
21 Salvatore F. Sciberras 1979 1982
22 Joseph C.Attard 1982 1988
23 Vincent Magri 1988



Band Commissions

Band Activities Overseas

Historical Events in which the Band participated

Song Festivals, Events or Drama Activies

Annual Concerts

Annual Musical Activities

Recorded releases (LPs, Cassettes and CDs)


No Name of Cd's Year Marches Funeral Marches Waltzes Others
01 Marċi Brijużi (2008) - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2008 *
02 Marċi Brijużi (2012) - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2012 *
03 Marċi Brijużi (2019) - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2019 *


No Name of Cd's Year Marches Funeral Marches Waltzes Others
01 Cantata Maria Mater Gratiae - 1951 - 50 sena - 2001 - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2001 *
02* Sultana ta' Beltna - 60 Sena Inkurunata 1951 - 2011 - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2011 *
03+ Mija u Tletin - Soċjeta Filarmonika Maria Mater Gratiae 2013 *

+ Singers Eleanor Cassar, Corazon Mizzi, Ludwig Galea, Mike Spiteri

Programmes and Publications


External links