Celebrating La Mercé
Last weekend we have celebrated Barcelona´s major festivities: La Mercé (September 24th). La Mercé is the Virgin of Grace and has become the cities´patron saint in 1687 after a plague of locusts where the local population asked for her assistance in fighting the pestilence.
Though La Mercé has religious origins it has nowadays grown into a festival lasting for four days with hundreds of music, cultural, artistic and culinary events. Michael and I have joined a few of them.
On Saturday we have seen the Correfoc – the fire runs. Along Via Laietana in downtown Barcelona a parade of devils light impressive fireworks. This originates from the “Dance of Devils” known in Catalunya since the 12th century. After the Franco dictatorship this tradition has been revived and adapted to modern times.
To get a good impression of the atmosphere I have posted two videos that Michael made with his new iPhone 8 – in astonishing quality. (This may have been decreased though due to the conversion to this website.)
After that we watched the fireworks by the beach before returning downtown to see a projection show on the Neptune fountain in la Ciutadella Park. As the invited partner city this year was Reykjavik, Icelandic artists turned the fountain into an erupting volcano with a life performance of drummers.
In addition we watched a very cool intergalactic, interactive musical show by Oval Ensemble Barcelona. It was a combination of several Oval performers with a lighting stage.
The Oval is actually a revolutionary new electronic musical instrument inspired by the handpans and designed to change the ways of music creation, learning and live performing.
The video I posted is a must see!