The delegate of Tourism, Culture and Sport, José Ángel Vélez, has been in charge of presenting the Moors and Christians festivities to be held in the municipality of Laroya, on the occasion of the patron saint festivities, on 26 and 27 August. The event was attended by the town’s mayoress, Dolores Moreno.
José Ángel Vélez explained that “it is a commemoration of the battles of conquest and reconquest by the Arabs and Christians in the Middle Ages. Accompanied by a band of musicians and presided over by the presence of the local saint, Ramón Nonato, and by the Moors and Christians squadron, made up of generals, embassies, ballers, flags, skewers and extras, who fill the town with enthusiasm and feeling”. “An example of the Andalusian government’s commitment to the traditions and culture of its towns, from the smallest to the largest,” said the delegate of Culture.
For her part, the mayoress of Laroya, Dolores Moreno, acknowledged that “since time immemorial the relationship between Moors and Christians has been represented in Laroya”. “The lyrics of this relationship have been preserved, thanks to the love and interest shown by the people of Laroya over the decades. The intonations of these lyrics and interpretations have been inculcated generation after generation”, the mayoress explained.
At the beginning of July, the first rehearsals and preparations begin, involving the alteration of costumes, the purchase of new ones and the replacement of objects necessary for the performance. This consists of two acts, the first performance which takes place on the first day, 26 August at 20:00 hours in the evening, and the second performance which takes place on 27 August at 18:00 hours. Each performance usually lasts approximately two hours.
In addition, the summer school and the Town Hall are promoting the performance of Moors and Christians for children. During the cultural week, the youngest children perform two smaller performances of very important moments of the performance. In the summer school classes they study small fragments of the original lyrics, they learn to swear the flag and the intonation, with the intention that this performance will last over time and continue to be one of the most important and passionate traditions that take place in Laroya. The largest percentage of participants in the performance are residents of Laroya, although there is also participation of tourists.
The main objectives to be achieved with this festival are, among others, to promote cultural activity in rural areas, contributing both to equal rights and to the elimination of the urban-rural gap by facilitating access to culture and its proximity, and to generate opportunities by improving its capacity to attract and fix the population.