Hundreds of people have attended a concert of sacred music performed in Malta by the Cappella Musicale Pontificia “Sistina” Choir, the Pope’s personal choir made up of 55 choir singers, including 35 boys and classified as being the world’s longest standing choir.
The “Exsultate Deo” performance was staged at St John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta.
Choir Master Monsignor Massimo Palombella pointed out the repertoire included European compositions from the 16th Century generally regarded as being the most prolific century for sacred music.
“The best, an anthological repertoire composed during the Renaissance Period for a Papal celebration in the Sistine Chapel. This repertoire was written for a specific location which was the Cappella Musicale Pontificia known as the Sistine Chapel. Obviously, the best of this repertoire among others is Allegri’s “Miserere” which was composed for the celebration”.
The choir, which has a history that ranges back to the Church’s First Century is made up of 35 boys who sing soprano and alto and 20 men, 11 of them tenors and the others bass.
The choir not only animates liturgical celebrations headed by the Pope but also conveys the Evangelical Gospels through music and song. Another concert for the choir in the short-term future is expected to take place in Detroit, the United States.
“The concert provides not only a journey into culture and aesthetics but is also a profound spiritual experience that helps augment our faith”.
The choir came to Malta following an invitation by Gozo Bishop Mario Grech and also performed another concert in Gozo at the St George Basilica in Victoria as part of the Victoria International Arts Festival.