The 'pinya': Passion for the 'castellers' from inside
Photo © Carles Castro: Pinya de los Minyons de l’Arboç, 2004.
The world of human towers (or 'castells') is becoming increasingly well-known outside Catalonia. These spectacular constructions and the emotion they arouse make it difficult not to take pleasure from them (and sometimes suffer) when watching live. But even more exciting perhaps, would be to watch how a castle is built from the inside, as part of the base, or 'pinya'. The doors to the training centre of any 'colla' (team) of 'castellers' (those who build the castells with their own bodies) are always open, especially since no one is superfluous when it comes to lifting castles. There are some teams, who, if you reserve in advance, will even give you a talk on this tradition which began in the 19th century, show you around where they train, teach you how to put on a sash, and even combine a rehearsal with a breakfast or dinner in a local traditional restaurant in the area. Do you feel brave enough to put yourself in the shoes of a casteller?