Friday, August 24, 2007

Corpus Christi in Andalusia

Mom, Bip and I ended up in Spain during one of the most important feast days of the year: Corpus Christi. Now you know I adore a procession. So when I saw these floats being festooned inside Seville’s massive Gothic cathedral I knew I was in for a treat.


Early Corpus Christi morning I got up early and rushed down to the parade route.

The procession winds through the labyrinthine streets of the old city. The city had stretched awnings over the narrow alleys…

…the balconies were draped with colorful shawls…

…and the cobblestones were strewn with aromatic herbs (nice touch!)

Sevillanos in their Sunday best strode the streets, carrying embroidered banners, silver-topped staffs, and giant candles. Tho Thpanith!

Immense, elaborately carved wooden sculptures lumbered through the streets…


…towards scattered bright altars.



Later in the day, we traveled to Grenada, where flamenco gear is de rigeur for Corpus Christi.


There was a procession here, too. Check this immense Last Supper float, which must have been at fifteen feet long.

As night fell, crowds promenaded the brightly lit streets.

Satire is also a part of Grenada’s Corpus Christi celebrations. In one downtown square, the crowd perused an incredibly long string of cartoons lampooning local traditions and politics.

My sister translated several of these for me. There were a lot of poems insulting Seville. Go figure.

On a tent-stage set up in the Plaza del Carmen, a choir of flamenco grannies sang about the beauties of Grenada. After the day’s concerts were over, the sound system came on and hyper little flamenco girls swarmed onstage to play dancer.



I have video of many of these kids dancing; I’m gonna edit together a bunch of my shaky footage and post a youtube Corpus Christi video soon.

2 comments:

HEWY said...

Beautiful!

garth said...

If you like processions, check this out:
http://209.213.221.5/mediaroom/HolyBloodProcession.htm

I missed this by a matter of days when I was in Belgium this spring. So sad.