In 2023, the cultural sector is back to full strength, as can be seen from the major concerts on Montjuïc
Summer festivals are now a cultural mainstay in Catalonia. That was already the case before the pandemic struck, but already in 2021 and 2022 there were clear signs of progressive recovery in the sector. In 2023, the cultural sector is back to full strength, as can be seen from the major concerts that have taken place on Montjuïc, and the recent successes of Primavera Sound and Sónar in Barcelona, with El Grec and Cruïlla on the way, with two new festivals in the city, Nits de Barcelona, in the gardens of the Palau de Pedralbes, and Soul in Poble Espanyol. One festival disappears but two emerge: a good metaphor to describe a sector in full growth.
Yet beyond the Catalan capital above all music festivals and concerts – alongside events devoted to the other performing arts – will proliferate this summer all over the country. It is hard to find a region or county that doesn’t have a festival and some areas have more than one.
Which is not to say there haven’t been losses, as some younger festivals that emerged during the pandemic have been unable to compete with a sector back in full swing. A notable absence is the Cadaqués International Music Festival, which last year reached its 50th edition. Meanwhile, another classic, the Castle of Peralada Festival, will celebrate a reduced edition this summer , while a new permanent auditorium is built in the gardens of the Empordà castle.
As evidenced on the following pages, which are not an exhaustive guide but provide some summer highlights, the number of festivals over the next few months make Catalonia unique in Europe. The summer festivals are one of the country’s cultural and economic assets, attracting not only a huge domestic public but also legions of tourists who visit us every summer looking for an experience that is more than just sun and sand.
feature Summer festivals