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Manresa, Fira and Human Towers

The human towers performance at Fira was a great success again this year. Some great towers and a huge number of spectators
2013/11/10 12:53:00 Europe/Madrid

The human towers performance at Fira was a great success again this year. Some great towers and a huge number of spectators

Crowds flocked to watch the human towers ("castells"), causing the now customary bottleneck at the entrance to Plaça de la Plana de l’Om from Carrer del Born. Many people lent a hand for the “pinya” – the bottom base of the tower – and watched in fascination as the towers were raised by the “castellers", with similar numbers of spectators squeezing into the section between the square and the first few metres uphill along Carrer de Sant Miquel.

The human towers team (known as a “colla”) Els Tirallongues de Manresa hosted Colla Vella dels Xiquets de Valls and Minyons de Terrassa, two of today's most outstanding teams who have been at the top of the human towers ranking for many years.

Els Minyons were the team producing the best towers on the day, with a fantastic “5 de 8” (8 levels with 5 people per level); a “2 de 8 amb folre” (8 levels with 2 people per level and a second-level base built on top of the “pinya”), a bit shaky at first but confidently executed and very well resolved; a perfect “4 de 8”, plus a pillar of 6 (6 levels with one person per level). As Els Minyons will be celebrating their festival next week, this seemed like a good omen for the “castells” you’ll be able to watch (from a good vantage point) in Raval de Montserrat.

La Colla Vella dels Xiquets de Valls made the so-called “clàssica de vuit”, consisting of 8 levels with 3 and 4 people per level, plus a “2 de 7” (7 levels with 2 people per level), even adding a special shape - “figuereta” - to the latter for good measure. All three towers were beautifully light and agile, made to just the right size by young team members. They rounded off their performance with 2 simultaneous pillars of 5 levels. We should also add that as Colla Vella had a stand on Passeig Pere III as part of the Fira, many fans from their home town could be seen exploring Manresa from first thing in the morning.

On the eve of their own festival (when they would be sharing the square with Els Salats de Súria and Els Nyerros de la Plana) local team Els Tirallongues de Manresa opened their performance by raising a tower of 7 levels with 3 people per level plus a pillar through the centre. Despite the high level of difficulty involved, they made the formation very efficiently.  Their second tower was a “5 de 7” (7 levels with 5 people per level), the first one they’ve achieved this season. It was a shame that the top children were very nervous once the tower had been raised, as it looked as though the whole thing might collapse. However, the fall was minor and no damage was done. The team then went on to nonchalantly complete a 7-level tower with 3 people per level before closing the event with a pillar of 5 levels.

Excellent performances given by the guest teams and a great response from the local “colla” made this a really enjoyable day for everyone, with the warm sunshine adding to the festive atmosphere. The weather obviously wanted to contribute to the “pinya” and do its own bit to make this a special day.

 

Jordi Cubillos