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Off topic: Carnival time is with us again
Thread poster: Maria Luisa Duarte

Maria Luisa Duarte  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:51
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Feb 5, 2005

Hi all!
Carnival time is with us again, and it falls early this year. The event has been a popular one in Spain for centuries.

The features common to these celebrations, which offered a period of indulgence before the fasting and penitence demanded by Lent, consist of the subversion of established order; the reading of edicts or wills containing biting criticism of local life, personality-transforming masks and disguises and, above all, permissiveness as regards behaviour which, in normal times, would be considered madness, stupidity or plain hooliganism.

Like other fiestas in Spain, Carnival is a time for merry-making, eating, drinking, singing, dancing and dressing up. One of its main features is the singing of satirical songs, composed by the groups themselves and poking fun at institutions, famous figures, solemn current events and anything else.


The main places in Spain for Carnival celebrations are Cádiz and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, in the Canary Islands:

Cádiz: In Cádiz the carnival procedures include a spirited procession, contests to chose the best singers and comedians, fancy dress balls, the selection of the queen of the festivities and fireworks. The main attraction is the procession which is held the Sunday before Ash Wednesday.

Celebration of Carnival was banned in both Spain and Portugal during their respective, parallel dictatorships: those of Franco and Salazar. The reasons are not difficult to see: Carnival is the most irreverent, subversive, authority-defying of festivals. So it is not surprising that rebellious, defiant Cádiz, the home of the liberal constitution of 1812, has a Carnival to match.

Cádiz is famous for the sense of humour of its citizens and Carnival is a festival in which authority, politicians, celebrities and the church are parodied and ridiculed. The central figures here are the choirs, agrupaciones, groups of between three and forty singers. Current events or personalities are mocked in comic song. The Concurso del Falla is a song festival held in the Gran Teatro Falla before Carnival itself and, to a certain extent, is a relatively serious choral competition.

The most popular type of group is the chirigota, a group normally of ten unison or close-harmony singers, accompanied by bombo, caja (drum, box - used as a percussion instrument), and guitar. Their repertoire is the most satirical of the different types of groups and the literary quality of the songs can be very high, as they may be written by local authors. Only a few musical forms such as the tango or pasodoble are used, so that everyone knows the tune and can concentrate on the words. Another important form is the tanguillo de Cádiz, considered a type of flamenco and also called the tanguillo de carnaval, so closely linked is it to this festival.

When Carnival itself is under way, these groups and choirs are to be found in all corners of the city or participating in parades, vying with each other and with the ilegales, groups which have not taken part in the Concurso. Evidently, your Spanish needs to be pretty hot to fully understand the jokes and parodies, but even if it is not, you will find it difficult not to get carried away with the general high spirits. Fancy dress is more or less obligatory, especially on the Sunday when the major procession, the cabalgata magna, is held.

Carnival comes to an end on the Sunday known as “Domingo de Piñatas”, when containers full of sweets and toys are hung up, then broken open by sticks or any other handy implement and their contents distributed to the people beneath.

http://www.spanishpropertyworld.com/carnivals_in_cadiz_carnival_cadiz_spain.htm


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 03:51
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
And how about the April in Sevelle? Feb 5, 2005

HI!
We are planning a stay between April 10 and 24 in Andalucia. Could you tell me when the April festivities are going to take place this year in Seville? I couln't find any reference for this year.
Thanks
Heinrich


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Maria Luisa Duarte  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 02:51
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Seville April Fair 12-17 April 2005 Feb 5, 2005

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

HI!
We are planning a stay between April 10 and 24 in Andalucia. Could you tell me when the April festivities are going to take place this year in Seville? I couln't find any reference for this year.
Thanks
Heinrich


Event Details
First date 12-17 April 2005.

Opening Hours All day

Cost Various; some events are free

Country Spain
State Andalusia
County Seville
Town Seville


Directions By Plane: daily flights leave from Paris, London, Dusseldorf, Brussels, Frankfurt, Rome, Valencia, Bilbao, Barcelona and Madrid. San Pablo is located 10km to the north of the city at Km532 on National highway IV, Madrid-Cádiz.
By Road: access to Seville from the north, along the E-5 motorway from Madrid.

From Portugal: along motorway 49. Granada and the Costa del Sol are connected by the A-92 motorway and Extremadura by the national Highway 334. Seville and Cádiz are connected by toll motorway or by the national Highway IV.

By Train: from Madrid take the (AVE) high speed train, which takes two-and-a-half hours. The train goes 15 times a day, stopping in Cordova and Ciudad Real, and prices differ according to the time of day.

Tourist Office
Name Seville Tourist Office (Municipal)
Address Edificio Costurero de La Reina, Calle Paseo de las Delicias, 9, 45013 Sevilla
Phone +34 954 23 44 65

Full Date Listing
12-17 April 2005


[Edited at 2005-02-05 08:15]


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 03:51
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Thank you, Maria! Feb 5, 2005

We come to Malaga sunday evening. Now we can decide, do we like to visit Seville during the last days of the fair or rather later, when the place is a bit quieter again.
Mostly we are going to tour and hike in the mountains.

Regards
Heinrich


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