Contents————————————————————————————————————————————————————— Cover Page

SEMANA SANTA en ESPAÑA
Dennis Switzer asked on 2001-02-26:
Are there formal Holy Week processions in Barcelona and nearby areas?
MMMMMIf you must be in Barcelona during Semana Santa, so be it. But you should be in Sevilla on Jueves and Viernes Santos 'cause that's where, and when, the action is!
MMMMM
where and at what time?
MMMMMI don't know where the pasos will be in Barcelona but you'll surely have no trouble at all finding them. I doubt that much will happen  before 22:00 but I don't know. I saw the action in Málaga, Jerez, and Sevilla and a few tiny towns between them. It was all quite wonderful!
MMMMM
What is the proper etiquette for viewing and photographing them?
MMMMMI know of none. Do as you wish but Spanish crowds are unforgiving. You might regret having any equipment that you can't stick in a pocket.
MMMMM
"Mikkalai" <mik_ka@*.com> commented on 2003-07-17:
 Spanish (Andalusian) Gypsies are pretty jealous with respect to Flamenco.
 What tourists usually see is not real Flamenco
MMMMMI was in Sevilla on Viernes Santo (Holy Friday aka Passover) when the streets were filled with zillions of Spaniards and a few tourists. At Midnight the parades began.
MMMMMPasos were carried through the streets by volunteers who subjected themselves to various self-inflicted tortures. Most anxiously awaited was La Macarena, arguably the most beautiful of the santos carried en paso through the streets.MMMMM
Paso, in this context, is a large platform/pallette carried through the streets on the shoulders of men. Many used burlap sacks and other means to protect themselves. Others went bare and had the blood on their bodies to prove it. This didn't happen only in Sevilla. I saw similar displays in Málaga, Jerez de la Frontera, and many small towns through which I passed. But, to the Spaniards, Sevilla was the place to be and I had the good fortune to be there and see La Macarena en paso.
On balconies along the parade route were Flamenco singers. The tradition states that a paso cannot move farther as long as someone is singing. The songs were heart-wrenching, making Edith Piaf's ouvre seem bright and cheerful.
MMMMMIn addition to the pasos, there were costumed groups. Some were dressed as was Pizarro and Cortéz and other conquistadores de américa (not a comfortable sight for a Jew who knows what else happened in 1492).
MMMMMOthers were hooded as the Ku Klux Klan (but they weren't Klanistas as the costume has some relevance to the Catholic church). Not a very comfortable sight for a White guy with a Black girlfriend waiting at home.
MMMMMOthers were wearing contemporary (Franco regime) military garb not unlike what the Ger- mans wore in the '30s and '40s (not a very comfortable sight for a Jew who was alive in those decades).
MMMMM
About two weeks later, I returned to Sevilla for La Féria de Sevilla. The town was filled again.
MMMMMWhither one turned, there were mounted caballeros and their damas, people of all ages in typical/stereotypical dress, and music and dancing.
MMMMMThe most memorable for me is a beautiful nymphette of perhaps ten who was wearing a bright red dress of the type you have in mind, the stem of a red rose clenched in her teeth, dancing, beautifully, on a sidewalk to the strains of a guitar played by a boy not much older than she, sitting on nearby steps.
MMMMMI heard, and saw, Flamenco as it's supposed to be heard and seen . . . unforgettably!
MMMMM
Mikkalai (_mik_ka@*.com) 2003-07-17
You were at right place at right time. I envy you.

Top of  Page ——————————————————————  Dancing ———————————————————————  Contents
5 II 5 — 1.8
1