03 October 2008 (gig)
10 October 2008
Aimed to bring more insight to the injustices, and blatant gaps between rich and poor communities throughout the world, the event focused on songs that were popular, are still popular or have just managed to make the popularity stakes. It is significant that Voices are bringing out songs like You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman, Shine and more popular sing-alongs like Se Bastasse, the Eros Ramazzotti song that has been huge more than 15 years since its inception. The great thing about Voices is how this big complex collective can manage to deliver such songs with such confidence and assurance over a period of ten days, punctuated by a three day lull which deservedly gives the participants time to rest and reflect, after three intensive rehearsing months.
Voices are also keen to help those who feel sidelined, and they do so in a very direct manner. This time, Voices even featured a singer with Down’s Syndrome, whereas two years ago, they featured two Congolese refugees who sang the Lion King’s theme. Then, it was arguably the highlight of the event. This year, it was quite difficult to choose the best song. I feel I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing, originally done by Aerosmith and sung by Gianluca Bezzina, could be the song, though the encore rendition of You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman, Aretha Franklin’s 1967 gem was also brilliantly done by Rachel Camilleri, Alexia Curmi, Jackie Pace Delicata and Anne Marie Mayo. They really did make it up since their first take earlier on during the show saw them lose harmony and losing out on the high notes.
The orchestra comprising seasoned musicians gelled beautifully throughout the evening. The musicians delivered a great rendition of Wings’ Live And Let Die, they were nimble on Wonderful World and faithfully folkish on L-Ahhar Bidwi F’Wied Il-Ghasel. One could also sense the sheer co-ordination between them on Caruso. All in all, Voices has provided a lot of good, unpretentious music education for those who wanted to further their career, and at the same contribute to a charitable cause. All funds collected from Voices go to charity and time and again, their stark, yet realistic images of poverty, famine and injustice has helped to bring a lot of awareness among those, not least myself, who tend to forget about other people’s plights.
This year, these images were less exposed but the message Tell Me Why, which incidentally, was also the name of a song featured in this performance, was meant to provide a stark reminder of our duty to help others in need. Christian Curtis