It’s that time of year again and Carnaval is almost upon us again but do you know about the origins of this festival?

Carnaval, as we know it today, comes from an originally Catholic event, but one which has its roots in traditional European pagan celebrations that revolved around the spring equinox. This marked the shift from winter to summer; darkness to light.

The original Catholic version was a food festival because it was the last chance to eat abundantly before Lent, a solemn 40-day period of sacrifice and fasting, especially abstaining from eating meat, starting on Ash Wednesday and ending with Easter.

The name “Carnaval” itself derives from the Latin carne vale which can be translated as “farewell to meat” or “farewell to the flesh” as Lent was supposed to entail abstinence from meat (carne) as well as pleasures of the flesh (also carne)!  In French, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, the final day of Carnaval, is known as “Mardi Gras”, meaning “Fat Tuesday”! This year Mardi Gras falls on 5 March.

The most (in)famous Carnavales around the world are held in Rio de Janeiro; Santa Cruz de Tenerife in Las Canarias, and Mardi Gras in New Orleans, Louisiana – although there are events all over the Caribbean and South America, especially Brazil. Carnaval is also celebrated here in continental Europe, with some of the biggest parties taking place in Cádiz, Venezia, Nice and Köln.

Here on the Costa Brava events are a slightly smaller scale but there is still lots of fun to be had! The 2019 version of Carnaval runs from 23 February until 6 March with events spread across those dates in various towns up and down the coast. This link will bring you to a site containing information on Carnaval in towns along the length of the Costa Brava: Red Costa Brava. If you scroll down to the bottom of the page you can click on whichever town you are interested in and get all the dates and times of the various events. For whatever reason, Calonge and Sant Antoni are not included in this website but here’s another one with the dates and times of their events.

Spot us!
Keep an eye out for the callCarlos truck!! We are sponsoring a truck again this year, so you’ll be able to spot us up on top as we drive through the streets blasting out our music!! Our costume theme will be a group of stylish beach club visitors who instead of enjoying the beach are too busy obsessing with social media on their mobile phones. The dance routine will be based around the (over)use of mobile phones, taking selfies with the audience, typing, being fake on our Instagram accounts, charging our batteries, asking the audience to take pictures of us, talking loudly into the phone speaker etc.

The theme is to make fun of and highlight how easy it is to become absorbed in social media and how it can take over our lives at the expense of normal social interaction. So the more ridiculous we appear to the audience the better we’ll get our point across! We will play ringtones and common mobile sounds to instigate an action or dance routine. The tunes will be remixes of well-known ‘beach’ tracks.

The parades callCarlos will be participating in are the following:

• Platja d’Aro: Saturday 2 March

• Sant Antoni: Sunday 3 March

• Calonge: Sunday 10 March

So, come meet us and join in the silliness and fun at one – or all – of our parades. We’d love to see you there!

¡Let’s Do Carnaval!

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