Beirut to be the guest city for La Mercè 2019For the five days that the celebrations for La Mercè last, from 20 to 24 September, the city will be offering a taste of Lebanese culture with various theatre productions, dance, music and screenings of films from Lebanon. A delegation from the Barcelona Institute of Culture (ICUB) has travelled to Beirut to establish institutional links and confirm some of the performances.
The programme for the guest city aims to showcase the contemporary arts scene of a city which shares a common vision of culture, creativity and art. This joint project is an excellent chance for Barcelona to strengthen ties between the two cities, as well as with the creative scene in Lebanon.
Beirut and Barcelona have a common history thanks to the Mediterranean: landscapes, traditions, customs and even culinary similarities. They are also both cities with a very open spirit, a crossroads for many cultures.
The cultural and artistic scene in the Lebanese capital is very active, and the fusion of tradition and contemporaneity is one of the other distinctive traits of a city which is culturally unique. Beirut and Barcelona are both also scenes for young creative talent.
La Mercè. An event shared with the world
Barcelona’s invitation for a guest city to take part in the celebrations for La Mercè is now a traditional feature of the city’s local festival. The programme for guest cities dates back to 2007 and offers contemporary artistic expression from cities which Barcelona enjoys or seeks to establish strong ties and collaboration with. The guest cities to date are Medellín (2007), Quito (2008), Istanbul (2009), Dakar (2010), St. Petersburg (2011), Montreal (2012), Vienna (2013), Stockholm (2014), Buenos Aires (2015), Paris (2016), Reykjavík (2017) and Lisbon (2018).