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Festivities Rei En Jaume


The festivity of the Rei En Jaume is the most representative Cultural and festive event in the Municipality of Calvià, which commemorates the landing of the troups of King Jaume I on the coast of Santa Ponça in 1229.

In 1994 thanks to the work of the Neighbourhood Association of Santa Ponça, the festivities once again took on the characteristic of commemorating a historical fact celebrating what is popularly known as Festes del Rei En Jaume or Festivity of the Landing.
Since 1995 the Town Hall and the neighbourhood association have collaborated in the celebration of the festivities that nowadays is considered to be the Great Festivity of the municipality of Calvia.
In 1996 within the programme of the festivities, the awards of Calvià were recovered, renaming them Premis Rei En Jaume with three different areas: painting, poetry and investigation.

Nowadays, the Festivity of Rei En Jaume combines historical knowledge (traditional and historical commemoration activities),  popular culture, art and up to date leisure and music activities.



Creations for the Festivities

Thanks to the collaboration of different associations (Association Pere Josep Cañellas, Association Geganters of Calvià...) and citizens in the Municipality of Calvià, the Festivities of Rei En Jaume have served for the production of different cultural eventss, amongst which should be pointed out:


Creation of the Work Una joia en el si de la Mar

In 1999 Bartomeu Ignasi Oliver carried out an adaptation of Llibre del Feits called Una joia en el si de la mar that was performed during the Festivities by a wide number of artists who loved being in Calvià, with live music played by the Municipal Band of Calvià and sung and spoken by narrators.

During the festivity of 2000 the work was also performed but owing to the difficulty in setting it up, this work hasn't been performed since then, but the musical performance known as the symphonic poem "La joia en el si de la mar" has been maintained by the Band and the narrators.


Music belonging to the Festivities 

During the last few years different musical pieces have been created to accompany the processions and the dancing.

The anthem of Abu Yahya, the music of the giants and the knights and the dance music of the escamots should be pointed out, all of them composed by Pep Toni Rubio.

The work of the symphonic poem, previouly mentioned, should also be mentioned, as the co-author is Mario Errea the present conductor of the Municipal Band of Calvià.

At the end of 2004 the Municipal Band of Calvià recorded a CD collecting together the pieces that make up the Music specially created for the Festivities of Rei En Jaume, together with other peices.



Images of Popular Culture 

Within the popular culture arising from the Festivity of Rei En Jaume the creation of images of the Festivity itself should be emphasized.

On a date that is unknown, 2 large-headed characters (cabezudos) created by Carles Gomis originally representing the King Jaume I and a Moncada knight, later changed into two Moncada knights after creating the giant King Jaume

In 1995 three christan knights were created with their corresponding horses made of papier-mâché. In 1997 another three Sarrecen knights with their corresponding horses were created, made by Vicente Alberola.

In this same year they were given names.  The three christian knights represented Guillem of Moncada, Sir Vallgonera and the knight of Bordils. The three Sarrecens represented Mohammed al-masieli, Ibn Fadhila y Abu Hamad Al Garnafi. All of them originating from characters taken from written history of the Majorcan Conquest.

In 1999 two giants were built representing King Jaume I and Queen Violante of Hungary. The creator was Vicente Alberola and the costumes were designed according to the period of Enric de las Heras.

At first it was the actual creators who carried them, but three years ago a group of young people in Calvià founded the association known as the Asociación de geganters de Calvià,  who are in now in charge of parading them throughout the island.

One element that is very important in the festivity is the helmet of King Jaume in the form of a griffin, that has been converted into a symbol of the festivity.

It should also be pointed out as important parts of the festivity the standards that represent the coat of arms of the nobility who took part in the conquest of Majorca and the identifying marks of the diffent collas that participate in the festivities.




All the characters have their own dances and music.

The dance of the giants was designed by the creators themselves and was later adapted by the young geganters.

The giants dance their dance during the christian parade, at the protocol ceremony and the meeting of the gegants.

The dance of the cavallers or knights was created by Antonia Rubio from the basic steps of popular Majorcan dancing.  The knights carry out a sham fight to the beat of the music of the Municipal band.

This dance is carried out during the parade of Moors and Christians, the protocol ceremony and the presentation of the standards.

The dance of the escamots was also created by Antonia Rubio and it is a dance using sticks, in which the representatives of the different collas take part.  It is performed during the presentation of the standards and before the final battle on the beach of Santa Ponça.

During the festivities of Rei En Jaume, it has become tradition for a popular dance featuring the best traditional music groups in Majorca to take place on the Friday following the protocol cermony and after the sarracen parade.

This dance usually starts at nine o'clock in the evening and finishes in the early hours of the morning, with dancing schools of "ball de bot" from the borough, collas and supporters from all over the island taking part.



An important part of the popular culture is the "nit de foc" which is a firework spectacular where the demons run behind the people throwing fire crackers everywhere.  It is an incredible show of fireworks and percussion that fills the promenade of Santa Ponça and one of the most popular acts of the festivity.

As a culmination of the festivities, a firework display fills the sky of the Bay of Santa Ponça with light and colour announcing the end of the yearly festivities.