Joseph Calleja

For the Maltese-American actor, see Joseph Calleia. For the Kid Rock sidekick of the same name, see Joe C.
Joseph Calleja
Born (1978-01-22) 22 January 1978
Attard, Malta
Nationality Maltese
Occupation Tenor
Years active 1998–present

Joseph Calleja, (born 22 January 1978 in Attard), is a Maltese tenor. He began singing at the age of 16, having been discovered by tenor Brian Cefai and continued his studies with Paul Asciak. At 19, he made his operatic debut as Macduff in Verdi's Macbeth at the Astra Theatre in Gozo and went on to become a prize winner at the Belvedere Hans Gabor Competition the same year. In 1998, he won the Caruso Competition in Milan and was a prize winner in Plácido Domingo's Operalia International Opera Competition in 1999.[1]

On 2 November 2012, the University of Malta presented Calleja with a Doctor of Literature Honoris Causa in acknowledgment of his achievements as an internationally renowned tenor.[2]

On 8 October 2015, Calleja was elected to the Board of Directors of the European Academy of Music Theatre.[3]

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Concerts in Malta

In 2009, Calleja began a series of annual concerts at the Granaries in Malta. The first concert was performed with Michael Bolton.[14] In 2010, he sang with Dionne Warwick and Riccardo Cocciante and his choir of 500 children. In 2011, he appeared with soprano Hayley Westenra and Italian singer Lucio Dalla.[15] In 2012, he was joined by Ronan Keating and Gigi D'Alessio.[16] In 2013, he sang with Zucchero, Rebecca Ferguson, Gianluca Bezzina, Riccardo Cocciante and Tenisha.[17] In 2015, he sang with Anastacia as a special guest.


Calleja's first solo recital disc, Tenor Arias, was released in 2004. He followed that up in 2005 with The Golden Voice. In 2011, his third solo album Joseph Calleja – The Maltese Tenor reached second overall position on the German charts[18] and debuted at number one in the US Billboard Classical Traditional chart. His 2011 DVD of La traviata from the Royal Opera House and costarring Renée Fleming was nominated for a Grammy award.[19]

List of recording and videos

Calleja made a guest appearance on Renée Fleming's album By Request, singing the role of Alfredo in the act 1 closing scene of La traviata. His recording of "La donna è mobile" from Verdi's Rigoletto was featured in the soundtrack for the 2007 film No Reservations, starring Catherine Zeta-Jones.


Calleja appears as tenor Enrico Caruso in James Gray's 2013 film The Immigrant[20] which also features Joaquin Phoenix and Marion Cotillard.



  1. 1 2 3 "Joseph Calleja". Decca Records. 2003. Retrieved 2011-12-25.
  2. "Joseph Calleja – Maltese Tenor", 18 December 2012)
  3. "New board elected: Thomas Adès, Joseph Calleja and Alessandro Di Profio new members", European Academy of Music Theatre, 10 October 2015
  4. "Standing ovations for Calleja at Nobel Prize concert". The Times. Malta. 2011-12-09. Retrieved 2011-12-25.
  5. "Malta's Musical Ambassador" (PDF). The Telegraph. London. 2011-07-01. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  6. BBC: "Prom 76: Last Night of the Proms 2012"
  7. "Artist of the Year: Joseph Calleja". Gramophone. London. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  8. "Calleja is Appointed Malta's First Cultural Ambassador". Times of Malta. Malta. 2012-02-12. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  9. "Joseph Calleja Appointed Air Malta Brand Ambassador". Di-Ve. Malta. 2013-07-02. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  10. Brian Kellow (December 2013). "On the Beat". Opera News. New York. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  11. "Joseph to give a concert at the U.S. Supreme Court". Decca News. New York. 2013-11-15. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  12. "BOV Joseph Calleja Foundation is Launched". The Malta Independent. Malta. 2013-10-25. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  13. "Drake Calleja Trust Website".
  14. "Joseph Calleja in Concert with Bolton". Times of Malta. Malta. 2009-01-09. Retrieved 2014-02-18.
  15. "Musical giants come together". The Times. Malta. 2011-06-20. Retrieved 2011-12-25.
  16. "Ronan dines at Villa Parisio". Times of Malta. 20 July 2012. Archived from the original on 15 August 2016.
  17. "Opera vs. pop – A summer concert in Malta". Euronews. 2013-08-03.
  18. "Calleja's album second in German charts", The Times, Malta, 28 June 2011
  19. "Joseph Calleja's new album debuts as vocal bestseller on German charts". The Times. Malta. 2011-07-03. Retrieved 2011-12-25.
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