La Mercé festival is a ceremonie with a music festival, Catalan traditions, parades, concerts, firework displays and many more events in Barcelona at many different places in the city. In addition, it takes place from the 21st to the 24th of September 2018 in Barcelona honoring one of the patron-saints of the city the Lady of the Mercy.
Mercè – the patron saint of Barcelona
Via – Barcelonaturisme
The commemoration of la Mercé has religious origins, honoring Mare de Déu de la Mercé (the virgin of grace) patron saint of the archdiocese of Barcelona and co-patroness along with Saint Eulàlia of the city. Besides, the festival has been celebrated since the middle ages when Barcelona city suffered from a disease of locusts. To struggle against insects, the counsel de Cent ruled the city for demanding virgin’s help. Moreover, when she delivered the city from this infection, the entire town named her patroness of Barcelona. Although this was only recognized by the Pope in 1868 since that time, an annual festival each September has been celebrated in the city in honor of the Virgin.
Top events of La Mercè
Human towers (“castellers”):
Via – Flicker
The human towers of the castellers are people forming incredible and huge human towers, there are various shapes of towers with 2, 3 or 5 people on each floor. In addition, they listen to the music during its construction and its changing tune gives an important information to the castellers about what stage it is at. Once the child at the top raises a hand, then you can cheer out loud the next part is to deconstruct it floor by floor. Besides, the Performances take place at the Plaça de Sant Jaume in the Gothic Quarter filled with thousands of people.
The Giant parade:
Via – Catalunyaexperience
The festival contains different parades of dragons and giants on the streets, which is one of the longest standing traditions of the city. You will find the big giants measure higher than 4 meters with different figures of kings and queens. They march through various streets of Barcelona also these figures tower above people in the crowds they go round and round so that everyone can see them in their glory.
The Fire runs – Correfocs:
Via – Wikipedia
This procession has become one of the landmarks of La Mercè 2018. In which people wore as devils and pushing the beasts of the city down the street is something difficult to forget.
In addition, the procession usually takes place on the Via Laietana at nightfall. In addition, if you want to be in the front you should wear protective clothing, long cotton sleeves and don’t forget protective glasses as the devils will chase you with their giant whirling sparklers.
Via – Barcelona-life
Throughout the four days of the festival, street theatre becomes a distinctive element of artistic events. You will come across circus, bands, dance, touring shows and fringe as the bulk of the events in this street theatre. It helps people to discover various cultures every year in Barcelona by means of the `Guest City’ programs.
Light shows and fireworks:
Via – Wikipedia
If you want to enjoy the light shows and fireworks go towards the Plaça de Sant Jaume and discover the beautiful façade of the city hall changes itself into a giant screen from light projection show. After that, regard to the vibrant colors of fireworks down at the Barceloneta beach.
The closing act of the festival every year with an exceptional fireworks demonstration right next to Plaça d’Espanya with magic fountain of Montjuïc playing music competing against the sound of fireworks blowing up in the air. To conclude, The celebration of la Mercè 2018 will have different events which showcase popular Catalan and Mediterranean cultural activities also The 24th September is always a public holiday in Barcelona in honor of the city’s patron saint La Mercè.