The txikis of the Marqués de la Real Defensa Public School yesterday kicked off the first great celebration of the year for Tafalla: The San Sebastián festival.
While today the City of Cidacos celebrates its big day, dedicated to its patron saint, San Sebastián, the schoolchildren organized their particular children’s tamborrada, which was carried out by the students of the Model D in fourth, fifth and sixth grades and which is part of the festivities leading up to today.
They and they, dressed in hats, scarves, suits and, of course, drums in hand, set the rhythm in their school while the rest of the students enjoyed the traditional songs of this day.
Although a few years before the pandemic the students of the regional school went out through the area adjacent to their center to celebrate this day, last year it was decided that the party would be held inside the school and this year the format has been maintained, carrying out the performances at different points in the schoolyard with the rest of the students and the teachers as audience.
The rehearsals began last Monday with the group of txistularis and with the eleven-year-old student Eder Ekisoain as director and Tamborra Nagusia. A task that Ekisoain knows very well, since he has been in front of his classmates since he was four years old in this act, already traditional for the Marqués de la Real Defensa Public School.
The performance lasted almost an hour and the almost thirty drummers and txistularis played emblematic songs such as Donostiako Martxa and Ikusi Mendizaleak, which were followed by others such as Azkena, Comparsa Caballería de Viejas, Idiarena, Tafallako Danborrada, Txalo Pola or Gau Ibilera.
“The snow has melted and it hasn’t rained so we have been able to enjoy the delights of the kids in the street. We do it with them so that they can enjoy the festival from an early age and become psyched up and take the festivity of the tamborrada as something of their own”, explained Andoni Cortijo, from the group of txistularis from Tafalla, who highlighted the great work of Ekisoain, in front, and the remains of students who starred in the celebration. Dozens of txikis of all ages, also wearing chef’s hats and drums, carried out a parade after the musical troupe created by the older ones.
The activity with schoolchildren goes back seven years, when precisely Cortijo encouraged the different educational centers of Tafalla to join the rehearsals of the official Tafalla tamborrada. “I went to the Ikastola, the Escolapios and the Marqués de la Real Defensa College with an explanatory note in which I told the parents what the tamborrada consisted of because I wanted younger people to join,” Cortijo explained. In this way, this center decided to start with the tradition and the txistulari began to rehearse with the most txikis, who year after year learned the rhythms and songs of the tamborrada.
Thus, since 2016, when Cortijo and Javier Ibáñez, who at that time was the director of the center and carried out the proposal, transferred this celebration to the classrooms, until today, the students have already acquired great skill with the drums, and some of them also participate in the subsequent popular tamborrada that was held in the afternoon in the municipality as a prelude to the big day in the city.
That of adults returns strongly after a two-year break
After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the traditional Tafalla popular tamborrada returned yesterday to the streets of the city with great force since this year it has received new participants.
The citizens of Tafalles once again enjoyed the rhythm of the drums for the festival of San Sebastián, which this year has brought with it events that began on January 15 and will continue until tomorrow.
After the txikis performed a small tamborrada, the emblematic tamborrada arrived in the afternoon and evening, when some thirty instruments toured the streets of the city center to the sound of the San Sebastián march. “We are experiencing this return very comfortably, because there has been a very good response both from the musicians and from people who have been encouraged to play the drum,” explained the group of txistularis from Tafalla, organizers of the event.
The first outings with the drum in Tafalla took place in the 80s with a series of parades by the group of txistularis, a celebration that did not last over time but was recovered in 2013 by this same group, which recalls that the act is an event popular and that “any neighbor who wants to participate can join”, since you don’t have to be a musician to go out and play through the streets. Thanks to the commitment of this group, the mandarras, the drums and the music fill the city from today and will continue until Sunday afternoon.
the big day
Today finally arrives the big day of Tafalla, with the traditional Aurora de San Sebastián, which takes place at 7:00 am tomorrow and will be followed by the rise of the City Hall corporation accompanied by Pipers, Txistularis, Comparsa de Gigantes , Dantzaris, Timbaleros, Maceros and Music Band to the Church of Santa María. In the afternoon, in the Plaza del Mercado, the children’s entertainment show Diver Tik Tok will take place and the Civic Center will host a dance performance by Maialen and Raúl, organized by the San Sebastián Retirees Association.
Finally, the day of the big day will close with a bull of fire.
Tomorrow, to end the week of events, the Tafalla Kulturgunea Cultural Center will host the poetic-musical show Katuen kontuak with Joseba Sarrionandia, who has provided the poetry, and Inés Osinaga, in charge of the music.