Dominator Fireworks

Dominator Fireworks Home Page

Feb 6, 2010

Fireworks display on Valencia's biggest festival, Las Fallas

Display location:
Date:March 17

Details: Valencia's biggest festival, Las Fallas, offers a riotous week of fires, explosions and parades.

There's an expectant crackle, then the loudspeaker roars into life. "Senor pyrotecnic, pot comencar la "mascleta" (Mr. Pyrotechnic, you may commence the Mascleta!), says the macho Spanish male right into my ear.

Next thing I know, the sky is ablaze with thousands of fireworks head their way towards the heavens. Valencians, their heads wrapped in blue and white scarves, cheer so loudly that the grounds of Plaza de l'Ajuntament, home to Valencia's City Hall, every time a new pyrotechnic is fire up.

"You need strong pair of ears to enjoy a Spanish fun, don't you?" I say to fellow travel writer Kanchana, as we watching the young Spaniards braving the thunderous sounds to get as close as they can to the front line.

It's March 17, 2009 as we're in Valencia to celebrate Las Fallas, the coastal city's "Festival of Fire".

Las Fallas actually marks the end of long, gloomy winter in Europe. Every year, from March 15 to 19, the Valencians stacks hundreds of huge puppets, and place them in the middle of intersections in and around town.

The puppets stay there for the five days of celebration and parties, and then on the last night every piece will be burnt to ashes

"It's rather like a Pagan purification ceremony, as we move from winter into a warmer day," offers Eva Crespo, our guide. "Except we do it for fun."

For five days, the whole town goes crazy. Brass bands roam the city to wake Valencians from winter. Kids, clutching bags full of "Churros" (chocolate dough), tease passersby with firecrackers. Here and there, you catch a whiff of gun power mingled with white smoke from the pans of paella.

And, for five nights, the street musicians occupy the medieval square of Valencia, and entertain the night with different beats, varying from African drum to hiphop.

The highlight is the burning night. That takes place on March 19, when the 30metre giants at City Hall are engulfed. It begins with sixminute barrage of blasts and the thunder soon becomes addictive. You hope the next bang will be even louder, vibrating deeper.

It takes less than 10 minutes to burn it to the ground. The crowd disperses, leaving the embers behind, to join vibrant street parties elsewhere.

Try it if you happen to be in Europe next month.


Post a Comment

<< Home