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Festival Mediterreanea, organised by the Astra Theatre, will open this week with the double representation of Giacomo Puccini’s opera Madama Butterfly on Thursday and Saturday and an evening of Argentinian tango on Friday.

The festival, which will run until November 17, will include other events to be held during the remaining weekends.

Music As You Like It is the first recital in a series of four being held at St George’s Basilica in Victoria, starting next Sunday at 8pm. With music from Mozart to Respighi, Rossini and Esperon, the recital sees the return of mezzo-soprano Oana Andra, first soloist of the National Opera House in Bucharest.

A second performance at the same venue is a piano recital featuring UK-born pianist Nicholas McCarthy, considered to be the youngest left-handed pianist in the world, on November 3 at 8pm.

At such a young age, McCarthy has already played at important UK venues, including St James’ Piccadilly, St Martin in the Fields, Fairfield Halls, Victoria and Albert Museum and Christchurch Cathedral in Oxford.

A third concert brings together soloists of the La Stella Philharmonic Band, most of them young musicians pursuing their music studies at academic levels.

The recital presents favourite pieces selected by the same musicians and presented either as solo works or accompanied by guest musicians. It will be held on November 10 at 8pm at St George’s Basilica.

Festival Mediterranea closes off with the annual grand concert by La Stella Philharmonic Band, featuring pop, symphonic, classical and semi-classical music on November 17 at the Astra Theatre at 7.30pm.

For information and bookings, call 2155 0985 or 7925 6897.

21 October 2012