Wednesday, September 28, 2011

BARCELONA: FESTES DE LA MERCE 2011

According to legend, on 24 September 1218, Our Lady of Mercy – La Mercè – appeared before King James I and Saint Peter Nolasco, ordering them to found the Mercedarian Order to free the faithful who were prisoners of the Saracens. This manifestation of the Virgin was made patron saint of Barcelona later when, in 1687, the city overcame a terrible plague of locusts after offering up prayers to Her.

Nearly two hundred years later, Pope Pius IX officially recognised La Mercè as the city’s patron saint and the people of Barcelona began to celebrate Her feast, though the current format of a programme featuring Catalan traditions was not adopted until the late-19th century.


This time I could enjoy the following activities:
  • Correfoc (Run Fire)
  • Projections onto the façade of the City Hall
  • Piromusical near the Magic Fountain
  • Festa al Cel Airshow


Correfoc (Run Fire)

The beasts from hell have been released and, accompanied by the devils, are ready to bathe the city streets in fire. El Correfoc is actually an outstanding event on the traditional Mercè programme of activities




El correfoc de la Mercè is one of the activities I like the most. The gunpowder that devils, fire beasts and all sorts of evil creatures bring with them, ready to begin their route around the streets of the city centre, is really spectacular




Going from Via Laietana to Sant Jaume Square I saw this nice image of El Palau Reial lit at night in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona




Projections onto the façade of the City Hall

At night, throughout La Mercè, the City Hall will become the “house of magic”. A spectacular show featuring stunning projections will breathe life into the stone of the building, revealing its nocturnal alter ego



In this way, then, light technology joins the party to produce one of the most attractive events on the programme


Piromusical

This is one of the events that awakens the greatest expectation and draws the biggest crowd, yet it is also ne of the saddest moments. For the Mercè Piromusical marks the end of celebrations until next year



The fireworks launched from behind the Montjuïc Magic Fountain la Mercè light up the sky, perfectly synchronised with music that, this year, will feature some of the best-known songs, tunes that form part of the soundtrack o our lives




Festa al Cel

Poster of La Festa al Cel 2011


The day was lovely and there were many people on the beach enjoying this fantastic airshow in Barcelona


Patrulla Águila is one of the most spectacular performers of this airshow. The aircrafts fly really close


Besides these activities, there are many live music shows in several interesting areas of Barcelona, like the Magical Fountain, La Plaça del Rei, Plaça Catalunya and so on. Finally, clicking on the next link, you can also see pictures of La Mercè 2010 and La Mercè 2012.

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