Malaga Culture: Three Annual Events not to be missed!
The Holy Week of Málaga (Semana Santa)
The Holy Week of Málaga has been observed for some five centuries. Processions start on Palm Sunday and continue until Easter Sunday. Images depicting scenes from the Passion are displayed on huge ornate tronos (floats or thrones), some weighing more than 5,000 kilos and carried by more than 250 members of the fraternity of Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza. These tronos highlight the processions that go through the streets led by penitents dressed in long purple robes, often with pointed hats, followed by women in black carrying candles. Drums and trumpets play music and occasionally someone spontaneously sings a mournful saeta dedicated to the floats as they make their way slowly round the streets.
Some Holy Week tronos are so huge that they must be housed in places outside the churches, as they are taller than the entrance doors. There are also military parades of soldiers playing processional band marches or singing their anthems along the route.
The Málaga Feria
During the celebration of the Feria de Málaga in August, the streets are transformed into traditional symbols of Spanish culture and history, with sweet wine, tapas, and live flamenco shows. The day events consist of dancing, live music (like Flamenco or Verdiales, traditional music from Málaga) and bullfights at La Malagueta, while the night fair is moved to the Recinto Ferial, consisting of restaurants, clubs, and an entire fair ground with rides and games.
The Málaga Film Festival
The Málaga Film Festival or Málaga Spanish Film Festival is an annual film festival held in Málaga, Spain. The festival was established to promote Spanish cinema and help disseminate information about Spanish films.
The festival has numerous screenings of the most important Spanish film releases for the previous year, including documentaries and short films. It has awards for the best films of the year as well as honorary awards. The main prize is the Biznaga de Oro for best picture. Other awardees, such as “Critic’s choice and Best direction receive Biznagas de Plata. In addition the festival hosts panel discussions and round-tables on topics of current interest in Spanish cinema.
The first festival was held on on March 9th through 17th of 1998. The guest of honor was Fernando Fernán Gómez, and the retrospective was dedicated to Montxo Armendariz. Although earlier the festival was held anytime from March through June, since 2008 it has always been held in April.