The festival pays homage to the Virgin of La Mercè, to whom several miracles are attributed. The first reference we have dates back to the night of September 24, 1218, when it is said that the Virgin appeared simultaneously to King Jaume I, Sant Pere Nolasc and Sant Ramon de Penyafort to create an order of monks dedicated to saving Christians. Years later, in 1687, Barcelona suffered a terrible plague of locusts and the people invoked the protection of the Virgin of La Mercè. Once the plague was over, the Virgin was named patron saint.
This 2022, the celebration will take place from September 23 to 26 and, as every year, has a guest city, now it is Rome's turn. The Italian capital will participate in the festivities, demonstrating its culture, history and Mediterranean lifestyle through various artistic collectives of dance, plastic arts, cinema and music. The poster for this edition is the work of David de las Heras, an artist from Bilbao and resident in Barcelona, who has chosen to represent The Festa Major through three women: a girl, an adult woman and an elderly woman, symbolizing the intergenerational nature of the festivities. The women are surrounded by fireworks, La Sagrada Familia, castellers and dancers. A poster very well received by the public and with a familiar and sweet message.
The opening speech will be given by Carla Simón, a filmmaker from Barcelona who has brought Catalan culture to the big screen through films such as "Estiu 1993" and "Alcarràs", which have participated in international festivals and have received multiple awards. As usual, the program of La Mercè includes concerts and all kinds of performances in the streets of the city, as well as the traditional fireworks display that closes the festival each year. Art, music, cinema, theater, workshops, talks and children's activities are the stars of these festivities. On the other hand, public transportation, especially the subway, will have extended schedules to facilitate mobility.
For the full schedule of the festivities of La Mercè 2022 you can visit the website of the Barcelona City Council or download the official APP. And if you're looking for accommodation in a privileged location in Barcelona, the Miramar Hotel is the best options. Book your room now and don't miss the Festes de la Mercè!
Cover photo: Ajuntament de Barcelona (David de las Heras)