La Mercè - Barcelona's Festival

Local fiestas

During the second half of September Barcelona celebrates each year "La Merce", that is, its Festival (Fiesta Mayor, in catalan Festa Major). It could be defined as a festival of festivals, with a lot of activities and with a popular character. In a week between 1,500,000 and 2,000,000 people will visit different public spaces of the city and enjoy the many cultural activitites, artistic and festive.

The city becomes a big stage full of imagination and fantasy. The involvement of a large number of groups and organizations is their big secret. Private Sponsors and coworkers provide their support. And besides, all the proposals, from the most popular to the most sophisticated and minorities, are totally free.

Each year Barcelona declares a city as a guest who has special relevance in the selection of events. Beirut is the guest city in La Mercè 2019, so this year you can enjoy theater, dance, street arts and cinema made in Beirut.

And what we can see during La Mercè?

  • A particular highlight is the street theater: dance, circus, brass bands, special proposals or parades.
  • Large format night shows: related to light and new technologies through artistic projections on buildings and monuments, or with fire and pyrotechnics.
  • Traditional activities: "toc d'inici" (which opens the festivities), parade of giants, human towers ("castellers"), Sardana, choirs and dance groups, "correfocs", Parades of "bastoners", "grallers" and "trabucaires" which brings together a total of 600,000 people.
  • Music also plays a prominent role during the Fiesta of "La Merce" . There are two combined proposals: A series of concerts scheduled for all audiences and the BAM (Barcelona Musical Action), an independent music festival that brings together the best of Catalan music scene and the rest of Spain, and some first-rate international artists.
  • La Cursa: a 10 km race that passes through the most emblematic places of Barcelona. It is good to see it but in this activity, better participate.


And where are the stages?

Barcelona City Council, Antiga Fàbrica Estrella Damm, Avinguda de la Catedral, Avinguda Reina Maria Cristina, Castell de Momtjuïc, Moll de la Fusta, Central Park of Nou Barris, Parc de la Ciutadella, Plaça de Joan Coromines, Plaça dels Àngels, Plaça Reial and Bogatell Beach.

The proclamation of La Mercè 2019

The proclamation that will mark the beginning of La Mercè 2019 will be in charge of Manuela Carmena. Mainly known for having been mayor of Madrid, Manuela Carmena is a lawyer and practiced the judicial career since 1981. She has received the National Human Rights Award, has been a member of the General Council of Judicial Power and is one of the founders of the progressive association Judges for Democracy. She was elected dean judge of Madrid and has also been President-Rapporteur of the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention of the United Nations Organization. His relationship with Barcelona began in 1966, the year he moved to our city and where he participated in the creation of the clandestine association Democratic Women, together with Montserrat Roig and Merced Olivares.

The end of the Festivities: the Piromusical

And like every year, a Piromusical show, a performance of fireworks, music, light and water (light and water of the Magic Fountain of the Montjuïc), will end the Merce festival this year.

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