The Incorvaja Twins
The Incorvaja Twins, Josephine and May Incorvaja, were born on Sunday the 1st of May 1960 at St Luke’s Hospital and grew up at Sliema with their parents, John and Mary, and their sister Connie. Now they are married and living at Mellieħa with their own families. Their husbands are both called Joe, Josephine has a daughter called Jeanette and May has a son called Jonathan.
They received their primary education at Sliema Girls’ Primary School, and their secondary education at St Louis Girls Grammar School in Ta’ Giorni, followed by a two-year Secretarial Course at the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology at Msida.
They started singing at the tender age of 4 years at the Sliema local parish hall and followed this by joining dramatic campanies. Infact they even took part in dramas and comedies at a very young age. During any particular presentation by the dramatic companies, most of the time they were involved in taking part in the plays and then singing during the variety part of the program. They took part in a lot of Song Festivals both locally and abroad where they were among the first three winners most of the time.
For about ten years Josephine and May studied the violin and formed part of the Johann Strauss School of Music Orchestra. During this time they also self-taught themselves guitar playing and many a time accompanied themselves when singing at small social events or school prize-days.
May likes reading and sports, especially Netball,both Josephine and May played for Ta’ Xbiex in national competitions and May later moved on to playing and coaching the Mellieħa Netball Teams. Josephine likes knitting, crochetand crafts, reading, cooking, playing tennis and listening to music. Their favourite singers are Shirley Bassey, The Carpentens, Tom Jones, Barry Manilow and ABBA. They prefer easy listening music to Rock and Heavy Metal.
Festivals worth mentioning were the Golden Cross Song Festival, where they placed first and were asked to represent Malta in a Song Festival in Sicily - this was when they were 9 years old; they placed first in the Tropheo della Madonnina held in Mellieħa; The Malta Song Festival (last Edition) where they placed second. At this time the Incorvaja Twins were the youngest singers ever to take part in this Festival.This was in April 1974. Other prestigious song festivals included the Malta Song for Europe, Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza, Konkors Kanzunetta San Pawl and L-Għanja tal-Poplu. There were obviously many more festivals and honours but it would be too long to list more!
They also had various TV appearances and done their first Cabaret Show at the age of 10 years. They have been singing in night-clubs since the age of 13 years and these included the top hotels and nightclubs in Malta, where one could name the Grand Hotel Verdala, Corinthia Palace, Malta Hilton, Dragonara Hotel and Casino, Mellieħa Bay Hotel, Palazzo Pescatore and Ta’ Marija amongst others.
At the age of 17 years they were invited to went to sing in Canada and USA where apart from singing for the Maltese emigrants there, they also took part in a Multi-national audition and were selected to perform in a showcase, an offer they had to turn down due to their return to Malta shortly thereafter to finish their final exams of their Secretarial Course. Whilst in Canada they sang at the King Edward Hotel and The Cheetah’s in Toronto, Canada, An experience they will never forget was their first appearance in Canada where by the end of their opening song everybody was standing up clapping and cheering. Josephine and May were so emotional that they had to make a big effort to be able to carry on to their next song.
In 1980 they went back again in Canada and USA, but this time taking with them their younger sister Connie who was 10 years old at that time and it was her first debut singing with her sisters abroad. Again it was another successful tour. During both visits to Canada and USA they made various TV appearances and took part in radio shows hosted by the later Johnny Catania. Since then, their sister Connie started joining them in their acts.
Another success story of their career was the tour they made to Australia in September – November 1983, where they gave live performances in Sydney, Melbourne, and MacKay (north Queensland). They began their Australian tour with a show at Sydney Hilton during the Quest of Nations Ball during which some 400 people from 14 different ethnic groups were present. They were the first Maltese singers to sing at this presitgious hotel.
They received great reviews both on the Maltese Herald and other Australian newspapers. Another first was that they were the first Maltese artists to go and perform in McKay Queensland. Every performance they gave in Australia was a great success with large audience attendance at each show.
It was a pleasurable challenge forthe Incorvaja Twins to carry on with their singing career, singing every evening in local nightclubs, hotels and restaurants and working as secretaries during the day. They were very well known and gained a very good reputation for their varied repertoire and their unparalleled melodious harmonies. May and Josephine always say that their career flourished and was such a big success thanks to their parents’, John and Mary nee’ Camilleri constant loving help and support and to the many musicians they worked with throughout their career.