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Posts Tagged ‘Spain’

Ederlezi – the Gypsy Spring Festival

Posted by dan on January 26, 2011

Scene from the film ‘Time of the Gypsies’. Click on link if video doesn’t play. The film was made into an opera and performed at the Milan Cathedral and Opéra Bastille in Paris. See scenes from the opera: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUQCNlHYDBo

The Gypsy exodus is very beautifully presented in ‘Latcho Drom’, a film by Tony Gatlif. It shows the journey from India to Europe through music and images only, recorded in Roma  (Gypsy) communities in India, Egypt, Turkey, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, France, and Spain.

Different in style and focus, ‘Time of the Gypsies’ by Emir Kusturica is another classic on the life of the Roma people. Set in Yougoslavia and Italy, it gives a good insight into petty crime and how the Gypsy are victimized by their own people. Music, composed by Goran Bregović and based on traditional Serbian Roma melodies, plays an important part in this film as well. A famous scene is the Spring festival of Ederlezi, also known as Đurđevdan.

About the festival:

Ederlezi: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ederlezi_%28song%29
Đurđevdan: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C4%90ur%C4%91evdan

About the films:

Latcho Drom: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latcho_Drom
Time of the Gypsies: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_of_the_Gypsies

About the opera:

NY Times: Opera With Attitude, Guitars, and a Dose of Mayhemhttp://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/28/arts/music/28emir.html?_r=1

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Some like it cold – a different dip

Posted by dan on December 26, 2010

Christmas swim. Video: www.euronews.net

Christmas swim. Video: http://www.euronews.net

  • “For the first time in 30 years the Serpentine in Hyde Park was too frozen to allow all the ice to be cleared for the Peter Pan Cup, a 100 metre race, so swimmers had a hot cuppa to celebrate Christmas.
  • “The Berlin Seals” ice swimming club have been taking the winters of the Orankesee for their health since 1979.
  • The Copa Nadal held on a Barcelona beach is a 200 metre race celebrating its 101st anniversary in relatively balmy conditions. Only the civil war has ever interrupted this Christmas dip.”

Source: http://www.euronews.net/2010/12/26/icebreakers-needed-for-christmas-swims/

The “Peter Pan Cup” Christmas Morning Handicap Swim: http://www.serpentineswimmingclub.com/christmas_day_race.htm

Serpentine Swimming Club: http://www.serpentineswimmingclub.com/

 

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El Gordo – the Spanish Christmas Lottery

Posted by dan on December 22, 2010

El Gordo - Christmas Lottery in Spain. Image: The Telegraph

El Gordo - Christmas Lottery in Spain. Image: The Telegraph

The Spanish Christmas Lottery (Sorteo de Navidad or Lotería de Navidad) is a national lottery game organized every year since 1812 by a branch of the Spanish Public Administration . As measured by the total prize payout, the Christmas Lottery is considered the biggest lottery worldwide, with its first category called El Gordo – the Fat One.

While consumer studies reported that Spaniards were spending less this Christmas, as the country struggles on with austerity measures and 20 per cent unemployment, the average amount each household spent on the lottery has increased this year, from up to 69 euros from 58 euros in 2009.

In what has become a favourite Christmas tradition, the annual draw on December 22 takes around three hours as numbers are sung out by schoolchildren in a televised process that has the nation gripped to its screens. Prizes totalling 2.3 billion euros (£1.9billion) were distributed to several thousand winners across Spain with the top prize awarded to holders of tickets numbered 79250, appearing on 195 tickets.

A lottery shop in the small town of Sort – the Catalan word of luck – in the foothills of the Pyrenees sells more tickets than any outlet in Spain because of the name of the town and the fact it has stocked winning tickets several times in the last decade.

Source:

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanish_Christmas_Lottery

The Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/spain…El-Gordo-lottery.html

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The greatest collector of Picassos

Posted by dan on December 10, 2010

Picasso: Massacre in Korea - Image: Wikipedia

Picasso: Massacre in Korea - Image: Wikipedia

Picasso once said “I am the greatest collector of Picassos in the world” – but surely there are other keen collectors, including Mr. Pierre Le Guennec. How he got the treasure trove of 271 artwork still remains a mystery, but now in a new twist it came to light he is the heir to another Picasso collection which was due to go for sale at auction house Drouot. Now the auction has been postponed, giving those who can afford it some time to plan a trip to Paris and attend it. With so many Picassos around, maybe you can get a very good price. Anyhow, whoever  the greatest collector of Picassos is, you can see a good selection at both Musée Picasso (Picasso museum in Paris) or Museu Picasso (Picasso museum in Barcelona).

Travel TipPicasso museum, Paris (Musée Picasso): http://www.musee-picasso.fr/

Picasso museum, Barcelona (Museu Picasso): http://www.museupicasso.bcn.es/en/

BBC has more on the story: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11968465

Drouot auction house: http://www.drouot.com/


Wiki-links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mus%C3%A9e_Picasso and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Museu_Picasso

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