Monday, 31 January 2011
Fifty-seven Human Towers at the Same Time
The Catalan tradition to build human towers (castells) has its origin in Valls, in the province of Tarragona. And although this is a small town of only 25.000 inhabitants, two of the four best teams still have their home here; Colla Vella dels Xiquets de Valls and Colla Joves Xiquets de Valls.
Every year towards the end of January, Valls organizes its winter festa major – la Candelera. However, for more than 200 years, every ten years this festivity is celebrated with a much greater splendour – les festes decennals - and when this occurs all human tower teams (colles castelleres) from the so called Catalan countries (Països Catalans) are invited to perform here. In 2011, this huge castellers meeting took place on January 30 and set a new record with 57 teams and almost 10.000 participants.
The most difficult construction we saw this time was a torre de 8 by Castellers de Vilafranca. The team where I am a member – Bordegassos de Vilanova – had a successful day, building a pilar de 5 in front of the town hall in plaça del blat and then a 3 de 7 and a pilar de 5 erected from below during the joint performances.