This is the first time that the KSU Students’ Fest show is being accompanied by an original song. ‘Fight the Feeling’ is performed and written by Yorika Attard, who is one of the singing coordinators of this year’s edition of Students’ Fest.
Musicians Matteo Depares and Matthew Pellicano helped bring the song to life in terms of production and instrumentation. ‘Fight the Feeling’ has just been released to the general public as an official single to promote Sai Mulan, KSU’s take on the classic Disney movie from the 90s, which will be revived at Sir Temi Zammit Hall this weekend.
The original song ‘Fight the Feeling’ is accompanied by a professional music video, showing Yorika performing the song on piano in several locations around Malta, and also teases some of the cast and musicians involved in the Sai Mulan production. The music video was filmed by Jean Claude Vella, with the whole project being managed by KSU Culture & Entertainment Officer Denis Muscat.
We caught up with Yorika as she started receiving feedback for ‘Fight the Feeling’ less than 24 hours following its release on social media.
How did the idea for the song come about, and why an original song for Students’ Fest this year?
It all started when we were trying to find a fitting song for a particular scene in Sai Mulan. In musicals, we always try to incorporate contemporary songs to make the production as vibrant and current as possible. Me and the other coordinators couldn’t decide on a song for this scene, so Denis Muscat (KSU) suggested having a go at writing an original song for the production. After discussing the concept of the song with the rest of the team, I locked myself up in my bedroom with my piano and well…that’s where ‘Fight the Feeling’ happened.
And why not an original song for Students’ Fest, right? As a singer-songwriter, it is very fulfilling to write a song and be so highly appreciated by the production team. Needless to say, it is very satisfying to have it exclusively featured in Sai Mulan. I think an original song truly captures what Students’ Fest wants to bring out of students; their creativity and artistic qualities.
Was the process a long one, from where it all started up until this point of the song’s release?
The song happened rather quickly actually. You could say I was living at University at the time, having lectures in the morning and Students’ Fest rehearsals in the evening. Practically, all I was thinking about was Mulan, Mulan, and more Mulan. I wrote ‘Fight the Feeling’ overnight with my PJs on, staying inspired with my favourite cup of herbal tea.
After I showed the first draft of the song to the rest of the coordinators, we agreed on recording the song and releasing it as the official single for Students’ Fest 2017. I met up with Matteo Depares at Matteo Makes Music, where we immediately started working on the musical arrangement and the recording of the song.
We shortly sought the help of Matthew Pellicano, whose incredible keyboard chops complimented the needs of the song greatly. Finally, as the song’s recording was being finalized, Jean-Claude, the videographer, came into the picture, recording some of the Students’ Fest rehearsals and incorporating them into the music video.
Should we start expecting an original song for every edition of SF from now on? Would you hope that this ‘tradition’ is maintained in the years to come?
Wow, that would be a great idea actually! But it all depends on the future Students’ Fest participants. I would love for this to be repeated again in future years, as writing original material not only makes the musical production more authentic but also brings students and their artistic abilities together in the best way possible.
Sai Mulan: the KSU Students’ Fest 2017 is going to be held in Sir Temi Zammit Hall at the University of Malta on the evenings of the 21st, 22nd and 23rd of April. Tickets can be bought on www.ticketline.com.mt.
Johann Agius is a fourth year law student who is currently the CEO of Insite after fulfilling the roles of Public Relations Officer and External Relations Officer in previous years. He joined Insite as a writer and photographer in 2013 and was elected in the executive for the first time a year later.