In 1965, the Reverend Monsignor Caruana (deceased Bishop of Gibraltar), a young priest at the time, decided that Gibraltar lacked a Community Centre and set about raising funds for such an ambitious project. Undaunted, his idea was to hold a Song Festival in Gibraltar as his main thrust. The Song Festival was totally comprised of local talent and became so popular that it became an annual event. Some years later, the then Father Caruana, had to relinquish control of the event due to his parochial duties and the Festival died a natural death.

Upon his retirement, Joe Carseni, winner of three Gibraltar Festivals, took it upon himself to revive this event. Such was his enthusiasm and determination that a Board of Directors was formed and plans set in motion to hold the first Gibraltar International Song Festival.

The revived Song Festival was held at the new Tercentenary Sports Hall on Saturday 29 September, 2007, and attracted singers and song writers from a large number of countries. Entries came from the UK, Spain, Australia, Portugal and as far away as Chile, Brazil, Colombia, the US and Australia, among others, and played to an audience capacity of 1,000. Subsequent to the festival, donations were made to local charities, since donating to charity is one of the aims of the festival.

The Festival is a window of opportunity for local, as well as international, talent and will not only help to promote tourism, but will also reinforce Gibraltar’s reputation on the world music stage.

The Performing Right Society (PRS for Music - UK) and the Sociedad General de Autores y Editores (SGAE) from Spain, along with the Association of Song Festivals of the Canary Islands, all enthusiastically support our event and annually notify their memberships accordingly.

The Finals Gala is broadcast live (livestreamed) on the Internet to an audience numbering millions throughout Europe, Latin America, Russia and surrounding countries.

The festival continues to go from strength to strength and has acquired international recognition and popularity, which augurs well for the future. The coming edition promises to be yet another spectacular and hugely successful event.

Full details are specified in the Rules page. Fill in the form, send us your music and good luck!

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The Gibraltar International Song Festival is partly funded
by the Ministry of Culture, Government of Gibraltar.

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All photographs, unless otherwise indicated, by Johnny Bugeja
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