The death of Mro Joe Vella was announced last night on Facebook by his son Nikki Vella.
He paid tribute to the memory of his father by saying that he had the energy of teenager and a heart of gold.
Prof Joseph Vella, a pioneer in the local classical music scene, died suddenly on Sunday at the age of 76.
Born in Rabat, Gozo, Vella graduated as a teacher and studied music with his father. He continued to specialize in musical studies in Durham.
In 1994 he was appointed Associate Professor at the Department of Musical Studies at the University of Malta. His portfolio includes the composition of 110 musical works which include five symphonies and seven concerts.
His musical works have been interpreted in Europe, Canada, the US and Japan. He was also the Director of the Maltese Choral Society set up the Academy’s choir.
He was also appointed musical director of the Astra Opera theatre.
Mrs Joseph Vella was also the first resident director of the Maltese Philharmonic Orchestra.