Twenty productions added to 20th Fira Mediterrània Manresa programme
Performing arts at Fira see the addition of the Danish company Brunette Bros, set to deliver a comic performance based on the theatre of objects
Stand-out music productions include the Polish group Volosi and a unique project by Joana Gomila, who invites audiences to become part of the creative artistic process for her new project Sibil·les
Three artistic proposals are added to the Focus Occitània line-up, which promises to deliver a rich selection of intangible heritage from the cultural and geographical region of Occitania
Anna Ferrer, Guillem Anguera, Les Anxovetes, Muchacho & Los Sobrinos, Inxa Impro Quintet and Tati Cervià will perform in showcases at Fira Business Area
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Twenty further productions are added to the programme of Fira Mediterrània Manresa, which marks its 20th anniversary this year, from 5 to 8 October. The announcement of the new additions to the programme — the programme preview was presented at the start of July — marks the completion of this year's artistic programme.
New additions to the music line-up
One of the main new additions to the music line-up is a classical music concert by the Polish group Volosi at El Sielu, where the musicians are sure to break sound barriers with their string instruments. The quintet fuse jazz improvisation and contemporary beats with their rock-music energy, to perform a traditional repertoire of songs from the Polish Carpathian Mountains. The outcome cannot fail to impress!
The Majorca-based singer Joana Gomila is also added to Fira's programme with a unique artistic project. The artist will invite the audience to take part in her latest adventure, a work based on Cant de la Sibil·la. The public can watch the artistic process first-hand, during a day of talks with experts, practical workshops and open rehearsals.
The music line-up is also set to feature performances by the following groups: Cobla Berga Jove; Galivança, from the Balearic islands, which will perform at the Folk Dance Night in Taverna Estrella Damm alongside Dijazzònic Quartet and Bal O’Gadjo; and Menace d’éclarcie, a brass band from Brittany (France) that play rock and roll on an assortment of traditional instruments.
New additions to performing arts
Additions to the performing arts line-up at Fira Mediterrània include a performance by the Danish company Brunette Bros, one of the main highlights of this programme preview. They will give seven performances during Fira, delivering their unique comic theatre of objects from a rickety old truck. The act is imbued with a decadent but delightful circus atmosphere, featuring five characters and a bunch of abandoned toys, which the Brunette Bros use to woo their audiences.
Teatre Kursaal will also host the production De poetes, cançonetes. Intended for schools in the Bages region, as part of the Firaescoles Cycle programme, the work consists of music and poetry. It features a magic suitcase full of children's poetry and songs, which take their inspiration from poems by legendary Catalan writers.
Tradition, participation and territory
As usual, Fira explores the potential of traditional culture as a means of encouraging participation, promoting community work and forging connections with a territory’s roots.
As part of this philosophy, three new additions have been made to the line-up of Focus Occitània, an initiative that has stemmed from the Euroregional project "Traditional Cultures in Dialogue". Accordingly, Manresa will be treated to a rich assortment of intangible heritage from the cultural and geographical area of Occitania, which places special emphasis on folkloric festival creatures, polyphony, dance and traditional games.
From 5 to 7 October, Fira Business Area will host Cultura viva:
Fargaires de Tradicions, an exhibition of myths, stories, legends, carnival imagery, folkloric festival creatures and traditional sport from Occitan and Catalan culture. Also, as part of Focus Occitània, two folkloric festival creatures, declared Intangible World Heritage, will come to Fira: Poulain de Pesenàs, declared a masterpiece of oral and intangible world heritage, and Tarasque de Tarascon, a forerunner of traditional mythological creatures and Intangible World Heritage.
All the above rounds off the extensive line-up offered by Focus Occitània, which consists of nine artistic proposals, including six that were previously announced. These are the polyphonic groups Aqueles, Cocanha and Polifònic System; the folk dance group Bal O’Gadjo, the joc de la morra team Mourra das Quatre Cantons, and Socarrel, a project headed by Roberto Olivan, Laurent Delforge; and Cocanha, which innovatively connects movement, electronic music and traditional polyphony.
Aligned with its tradition of participation, Fira's programme also features Companyia de Jocs l’Anònima. Enjoying a long track record of promoting and reviving traditional games, the company will be based in Plaça Major to encourage both children and adults to have fun through play. At the same time, Plaça Major will also host an installation, based on a community project through a course hosted by AMPANS, in which some twenty young people participated. The resulting creation consists of a spectacular mechanical tree sculpture, based on the design and manufacture of iron pieces and movement sensors. Ferroluar coordinated the workshop, where participants made animals and brought them to life, mechanically.
Meanwhile, the human tower building event — a classic at Fira Mediterrània since it was founded — will feature a performance by the Castellers de Berga, who will join the already confirmed teams, the Tirallongues de Manresa and the Castellers de la Vila de Gràcia.
Finally, emphasising national heritage, Fira will host an intriguing act from La Garrotxa region with the festival imagery of Sant Feliu de Pallerols: the Ball de Cavallets, Gegants and the Mulassa, with five emblematic dances from Old Catalonia.
Performances at Fira Business Area
Six artists will perform in 30-minute artistic showcases at Fira Business Area, located in the Technical Museum.
On 5 October, Tati Cervià will open the professional showcases with Secreta veu, a musically daring journey, rich in tone and style. On the same day, Fira Business Area will also host a performance by Anna Ferrer with Tel·lúria, a selection of her own songs that reflects the singer's personal musical mission.
Friday 6 October sees a performance by Inxa Impro Quintet, a group headed by the multi-instrumentalist Manu Sabaté, which introduces improvisation into traditional folk dance music. In the afternoon, the accordion player Guillem Anguera presents his first solo album, 14 km.
Finally, on Saturday 7 October, the business area will host performances by Les Anxovetes, a female group of havanera singers, and Muchacho & Los Sobrinos, with rumba in its purest form, which they will also perform in the Taverna Estrella Damm on 8 October.
Both these performances and the rest of the programme that will take place in Fira Business Area are intended for the one thousand industry professionals that register each year.
OFF – Amateur Theatre groups in Central Catalonia
Once again, this year, Fira Mediterrània includes an OFF section, organised by the Catalan Federation of Amateur Theatre Groups. The programme features performances by five companies based in Central Catalonia: l’Agrupació Teatral i Cultural de Castellbell i el Vilar with Boeing; Cul-i-Seu with Mentiders; Grup de Teatre del Centre Parroquial de Monistrol de Calders with Les amargues llàgrimes de Petra Von Kant; Grup Escènic Navàs with their own play, Pels camins de la mentida; and Qollunaka Grup de Teatre, which brings Tot assajant un clàssic to the stage.
Tickets can now be purchased for all paid-entry shows. Tickets can be purchased on the Fira website (www.firamediterrania.cat) and in the Kursaal ticket office.