Not too long ago, we spoke of one of those traditions that is so deeply rooted in our country’s culture that we can’t imagine life without them.  We are, of course, referring to carnival.

Last week, we brought you an entry covering a marvelous project springing forth from another marvelous project.  This would be INAUTHERRIA, which is working to compile the different sounds of carnival celebrations from all parts of our country (and other points in Europe), which is a part of the Soinu Mapa project at Audiolab.

And whenever we think of carnival, we immediately think of the Soule Maskarada.  It’s a unique way of celebrating carnival that they have in Soule which has two great points for us.  The first is the commitment shown by the youth of Soule to preserve this tradition.  The second is that it’s being preserved in the smallest Basque territory, in both size and population (760 km²/290 mi² and just 17,000 residents).  That gives a special value to this Basque community, which we’ve spoken of often as if there’s any place where basques feel Basque, it’s in Soule (or Xiberoa, or Zuberoa).

From January to March, young people from a town in this part of our country will go from village to village, doing the Maskarada.

This year, 2023, it’s the turn of the young people from the capital, Maule.  The circuit got started on January 15, and will finish on April 22, with the same play (and festival) in the same town where it started, Maule.  There will be a total of 15 shows in different places in throughout Soule.

What that means is that you still have time to plan a trip to north of the Pyrenees to enjoy a day full of traditions, Basque culture, and fun.  We promise you.

We’ll leave you the video we prepared about this tradition for an article we wrote for our Viewpoints series.  There, you can find more information, as well as an explanation of what the Soule Maskarada is as published by the Basque Cultural Institute of the Northern Basque country.

EKE – – Euskadi

The Souletin mascarade

The mascarade is a carnival festival from the province of Soule which combines both dance and theatre. Although the rural exodus put a stop to this practice for may years, its recent revival bears witness to its vitality thanks to the local population which has managed to combine both tradition and modernity.

(English) (Spanish) (Basque) (French)

Last Updated on Feb 20, 2023 by About Basque Country

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