LoranneVella

1.

Biography

Embracing an interdisciplinary approach that crosses the boundaries of both genre and platform, Loranne Vella’s work continues to show off the infinite adaptability of the Maltese literary and dramatic idiom. With a career spanning from teaching to translation, Vella has published the award-winning dystopian novel Rokit through Merlin Publishers in 2018, it being just one example of a long and fruitful publication with the landmark Maltese publisher.

Jump to bibliography

Indeed, together with her writing partner Simon Bartolo, Vella helped make Maltese literary history with the Fiddien trilogy back in the early aughts, which broke all sales records and gave Malta its own Young Adult fantasy mini-boom right at the cusp of Potter-fever.

Her forays into speculative fiction continued with Magna™ Mater (Merlin Publishers, 2011) and indeed, Rokit – both of which explore imaginary dystopian scenarios involving the Maltese islands, with the latter moving away from the YA aesthetic to embrace a more sombre and layered time-travelling tale of revolution and shifting identities, which won the National Book Prize in 2018.

Not that Vella is an author who can be easily pigeonholed either way.

Now working as a translator in the European Parliament, Vella cut her professional teeth as a teacher in St Aloysius College, subsequently also teaching Theatre Studies at the University of Malta for five years. Vella was a founding member of the Aleateia theatre group, whose independent-minded approach and commitment to producing original work on the Maltese stage in a scene still sadly better known for its staging of imported English-language scripts, remains notable to this day. It is certainly a thread Vella continued to pick at when she helped form the Barumbara Collective with a group of fellow performing arts practitioners in Brussels. Vella’s short story collection, mill-bieb ’il ġewwa (Ede Books, 2019), which features a collaboration with photographer Zvezdan Reljić, was the basis of an interdisciplinary Barumbara Collective production, staged at Valletta Contemporary in 2018. An English-language translation from the UK-based micro-publisher Praspar Press is slated for release in 2021.

She reunited with Simon Bartolo to pen the lyrics to his play Il-Ħanina Maddalena, a high-profile period piece staged at the 2018 edition of the Malta International Arts Festival. In collaboration with artist Trevor Borg and in conjunction with his contribution to the Malta pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2019, ‘Cave of Darkness’, she wrote a storybook for children entitled Smajna isimna taħt l-art.

Vella has also translated over ten childrens’ books into Maltese for Merlin Publishers, and continues to produce work for the Barumbara Collective.

Written by Teodor Reljić

2.

Bibliography

Smajna isimna taħt l-art

The earth called us by our name
Picture book
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Trevor Borg
Publisher
Arts Council Malta & Heritage Malta, Malta

Mill-bieb 'il ġewwa

Prose
Maltese
Author
Photographer
Zvezdan Reljić
Publisher
Ede Books, Malta
Related titles

what will it take for me to leave

Prose
English
Author
Translator
Kat Storace
Publisher
Praspar Press, UK

Il-Ħanina Maddalena

Musical
Maltese
Author
Production
Malta International Arts Festival

Scanje in hostije

in “After September”
Prose
Slovenian
Author
Translator
Miriam DrevRamon Zerafa
Editor
Immanuel MifsudPeter Semolič
Publisher
Antologie Vilenice, Slovenia

It-tifel-dragun: Il-ktieb il-kbir tal-lejl

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Jérémie Fleury
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

It-Tfal tal-Labirint

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Gaëlle Hersent
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Rokit

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta
Related titles

المنزل رقم 36

House No. 36
Prose
Arabic
Author
Translator
Walid Nabhan
Publisher
Dar Noon, Egypt

Lisa u l-Kejkovoru

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Gérald Guerlais
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

L-Istilistini: L-ewwel sfilata ta’ Kate

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Shiilia
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Sara Ballerina: L-ewwel passi fuq il-palk

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Ariane Delrieu
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

L-Investigazzjonijiet ta’ Arkimeda Lapsi: Misteru fil-kamp tal-Indjani

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Carine Hinder
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Monumenti Misterjużi: L-Enigma tal-Kavallier

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Mary-Gaël Tramon
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Se jkollna robot? Le grazzi!

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Coralie Vallageas
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Kosmos Express: Il-Pjaneta Pprojbita

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Oriol Vidal
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Vjoletta

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Monsurós
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

L-Investigazzjonijiet ta’ Arkimeda Lapsi: Din iċ-ċajta min għamilha?

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Carine Hinder
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Kosmos Express: Il-Wikkiel tal-Pjaneti

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Oriol Vidal
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Par widnejn kbar

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Yllya
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Se jkolli ħija żgħir? Le grazzi!

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Coralie Vallageas
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Merħba fir-Rifuġju ta’ Kobikisa!

Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Loranne Vella
Illustrator
Madeleine Brunelet
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Dawn l-erbat ikmamar l'għandi

These four rooms of mine
Prose
Maltese
English
Author
Artist
Ritty Tacsum
Publisher
The Author

Magna™ Mater

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Il-Ġnien tad-Dmugħ

Fiddien Trilogy: Book 3
Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Wied Wirdien

Fiddien Trilogy: Book 2
Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Sqaq l-Infern

Fiddien Trilogy: Book 1
Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta
Supported by

Arts Council Malta

Creative Industries Platform

Project co-ordinator: Clare Azzopardi

With the help of: Kirsty Azzopardi, Leanne Ellul and Albert Gatt

Proofreader: Dwayne Ellul

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