A mother’s love
Ghosts of Christmas Past director Lucienne Camilleri tells Iggy Fenech how this production promises to bring out the true power of love.
Many of us head to the theatre at Christmastime; indeed even the non-self-professed theatregoers among us will probably get tickets to one of the traditional pantos. Yet, DLS Production’s latest serving – Ghosts of Christmas Past – will have a very different flavour to the other productions on offer.
“Ghosts of Christmas Past is an opportunity to sit back and remind ourselves that, while we’re not all born with equal opportunities, those who love us move heaven and earth to create them for us,” says director Lucienne Camilleri, whose script credits include A War to End All Wars, which was a walk-through musical performance at Forti Madliena, and Belliegħa at Pjazza Teatru Rjal.
“Indeed, the story is one of love; a mother’s love where a decision was once taken in the hope of providing a better future for her son. This is a mother who sacrifices herself to ensure her son secures a good life for himself, even if it means never seeing him again.”
As Lucienne continues to explain, the story, in a way, runs parallel to the one of the Nativity, particularly Mary’s love for Jesus, which leads her and Joseph to leave Nazareth in search of safety.
“It is a story of selfless love that moves us to put our children before anything else; to work hard to always ensure they lead better lives than we did or have; to help them dream and to, eventually, allow those dreams to become reality.”
Yet Ghosts of Christmas Past is not a traditional play, either. In it, rock music and Christmas carols come together to give life to a story narrated by Emanuel Tabone and Laura Cornelius, together with teen companions Lisa Mangion and Crispin Gauci Peresso.
For this, DLS teamed up with the Rock’N’Malta Fund and Festivals Malta to create a Symphonic Rock mix that will have ‘a spine-tingling’ effect. And they’ve gone all out by bringing together 11 musicians, the vocal talents of Chris Grech, Neville Refalo, Nadia Vella and Stefania Grech, 16 accompanying singers and four dancers to add to the magic.
“They all contribute to a narrative, a Christmas narrative… The rock music shows off our much-loved carols in the best possible way, while these, in turn, serve as a background to our story – a story set in a mulled time where wine is poured and secrets told, where enemies are forgotten and friends hold steadfastly on to what matters most,” Lucienne adds.
Taking place at the Valletta Campus Theatre (ex-MITP) every evening between December 13 and 16, Ghosts of Christmas Past is set to be a wonderful way to kick off the Yuletide season. And Lucienne is certainly excited to see it all come together.
“Many performers find their bit of paradise on stage; and, I must say, I found mine when I started writing and directing. Nothing prepares you for the incredible satisfaction of watching a cast come together to make your imagination as tangible and real as life itself. And we’re all incredibly excited to showcase Ghosts of Christmas Past to audiences!” she concludes.
Ghosts of Christmas Past will be on at the Valletta Campus Theatre between December 13 and 16. For tickets, visit www.ticketline.com.mt.