11 - 17 April 2001

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Charitable music marathon kicks off next week

By Nadine Brincat

16 April will feature the Go Mobile Live Music Marathon at BJ's, set to run for 100 hours, but expected to be extended if donations keep coming in, as has become the custom for the annual event.

"The idea behind the marathon is to enjoy good music, to raise funds for a philanthropic cause, while preserving live music as a form of entertainment," Philip Fenech, the organiser of the event told The Business Times.

While this year's beneficiary will be the Millennium Chapel, past beneficiaries of the marathon include Dar tal-Providenza, Eden Foundation, Cash for Cancer, Institute for Brain Injured Children (Malta), Torball Association, Amanda and Oliver, two children requiring medical intervention, and Suriet il-Bniedem.

This year Fabrizio Fiannello confirmed his participation in the opening of the Marathon, while Education Minister Louis Galea, and Opposition MP Mary Louise Coleiro, will also also be attending. During the opening ceremony, to be held on 16 April at 5.30 pm, Fr Hilary will also talk about the Millennium Chapel.

As Education Minister, Dr Galea will follow tradition and participate in the Marathon as a musician, and will give the audience a taste of his finesse on the pianoforte.

Apart from top local professionals, semi-professionals and up-coming musicians will also take part in the event. For example, Peter Nay, from Germany is scheduled to take part. He was on holiday in Malta, when he first found out about the marathon a few years back, and he has been helping out and participating every year since.

A more prominent foreigner who made a significant musical and financial contribution to the Marathon was Jon Bon Jovi, who was in Malta two years ago, filming U-571. His musical appearance is reported to have collected over Lm1,000.

Those interested in participating are to phone BJ's on 337642 or leave a message on 09493534.

Philip Fenech, Director of BJ's nightclub, is also President of Hospitality and Leisure Section of the General Retailers Trade Union. "As an association and as entrepreneurs in the Paceville town centre we back what Father Hilary has done with the Millennium Chapel, which has made a crucial difference, by offering a social service.

"The area, as is now full of all forms of activity, attracting all people locals and tourists of all ages," he explained.

Mr Fenech explained that Fr Hilary and his team need all the help they can get, as there are considerable expenses in providing the services.

"We are asking the public at large to participate by coming and keeping musicians company during the long hours and for groups to organise fund collection maybe at work place, or families or social group, and bring that donation to the club, or alternatively there is a BoV bank account, called the BJ's Music Marathon account, where to deposit funds can be placed," he added.

On 16 April, three telephone lines will be activated to collect donations from the general public. Donations of Lm3 can be made on 549553, those of Lm5 on 549555, whereas the more generous Lm10 donations can be made on 549510.

The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07
Tel: (356) 382741-3, 382745-6 | Fax: (356) 385075 | e-mail: editorial@networkpublications.com.mt