summer

Solsona’s International Music Academy welcomes 65 young talents from 20 different nationalities

August 12, 2014 08:52 PM | ACN / Neringa Sinkeviciute

Solsona's International Music Academy (AIMS) is a high level international project, which is also the first and only pedagogical music festival in Catalonia. It was created by the German cellist Peter Thiemann in order to bring together classical music students and professors of acknowledged international prestige who play in Europe's main orchestras. It is an intensive education project which takes place in a beautiful rural environment in Solsona, a town near the Pyrenees in Central Catalonia. This year, the 13th edition of the AIMS festival is held from the 6th to the 17th of August, and includes the participation of 65 students from 20 different nationalities. 30 concerts have been scheduled in ten municipalities of Western and Central Catalonia.

Registered unemployment in Catalonia falls by 1,983 people in July and equals rates from December 2010

August 4, 2014 09:21 PM | ACN

568,231 unemployed people were registered with the Catalan Public Employment Service (SOC) this July, 1,983 less than in June, which represents a 0.35% reduction. This is 42,198 less unemployed people than in July 2013, or a 6.91% annual reduction. All of the Catalan provinces have seen a drop in unemployment over the past month. In addition, there has been an increase of Catalans registering with Social Security, a 12% rise in hiring rate and nearly all sectors in Catalonia are creating new jobs. In Spain as a whole the number of people looking for work stands at 4,419,860 people, 281,478 fewer than the previous year, which represents a 5.94% annual drop. 

Electronic music pioneers Pet Shop Boys rock the stage at Costa Brava summer festival Cap Roig

August 4, 2014 09:09 PM | ACN / Neringa Sinkeviciute

On Sunday night Pet Shop Boys presented their 12th studio album, Electric, at the summer music festival of Cap Roig, which takes place every year in Calella de Palafrugell, in the Costa Brava. The band performed an extraordinary show which included lighting effects, such as laser light beams, colourful theatrical smoke, and screen projections. Combining synthpop style, house and techno with more recent dance tracks, they have managed to evolve over the years but at the same time preserve their distinct style and continue to be revolutionary with every release. Cap Roig Festival is taking place from the 4th of July to the 15th of August and is combining worldwide-known artists and local musicians, such as Elton John, Bryan Adams, Placebo, James Blunt, Antonio Orozco and Els Pets, among others.

Barcelona's performing arts summer festival Grec attracts 80,000 spectators, filling 58% of the potential capacity

August 1, 2014 08:56 PM | ACN

This year's edition of Barcelona's performing arts summer festival, Grec, attracted around 80,000 spectators and achieved a 58.15% capacity utilisation in the shows which require payment. According to provisional statistics, taken before the event was over, for the 79 shows that made up the summer festival there were 136,291 seats available and 67,623 tickets were sold, filling 49.61% of the potential capacity. However, overall there was total of 79,254 spectators. Last year 66,466 people attended the shows which required payment and 55,766 tickets were sold. The total number of spectators who attended the festival this year, both paying customers and those who went to free shows, amounted to 127,471 people, whilst in 2013 there were 119,000 individuals.

Over 30,000 people are estimated to attend open air film festival in Barcelona this summer

July 31, 2014 05:40 PM | Rebecca Lock

The 12th Edition of Sala Montjuïc, an open air film festival which takes place every summer in Barcelona, is in full swing, and organisers estimate that over 30,000 people will have attended the event by the end of its five week running period. The festival runs from the 6th of July to the 8th of August and hosts evenings of live music, short films and feature length movies three times a week. An average of 2,000 spectators a night attend the screenings, which are located next to an old military castle on Montjuïc, a small hill facing Barcelona's harbour. Families can rent deckchairs, bring food and drink and enjoy watching the film whilst seated on the lawn alongside the castle's wall, in what used to be the ancient moat. This year one of the highlights included a special screening of the 1927 German classic Metropolis on the 18th of July which was accompanied by a live jazz band.

Unemployment rate in Catalonia falls from 22.1% to 20.22% in the second quarter as 79,300 jobs are created

July 24, 2014 09:37 PM | ACN

The number of unemployed people in Catalonia has decreased by 69,800 in the second quarter of this year; the largest drop in unemployment rates in the whole of Spain and the biggest decline in the jobless population in the last 12 years. Catalonia also created 79,300 new jobs in the second quarter of this year, a rise of 2.68% in comparison to the first quarter. This means that the total unemployment rate in Catalonia has dropped by nearly 2 percentage points since March 2014, falling from 22.1% to 20.22%. Spain as a whole has also registered a drop in unemployment of 310,400 people, meaning the number of jobless citizens is down to 24.47% of the total active population.

The new Camp Nou Lounge is unveiled as a gastronomic attraction this summer

May 29, 2014 02:37 PM

FC Barcelona has opened a new quality gastronomic space with exclusive views of the Barça's Stadium, as part of the Camp Nou Experience tour. From this week and until mid-August, the first tier of the stadium is converted a space where visitors can enjoy quality cuisine with a privileged panoramic view of the ground. This is just one of the many new attractions that FC Barcelona has prepared so that people visiting the club this summer can enjoy the most complete leisure and catering experience possible. In this space, apart from a wide range of Damm beers, including the beer created in collaboration with Catalan chef Ferran Adrià and the team from El Bulli called Inedit, visitors can enjoy hot and cold tapas, desserts and ice creams.

Catalonia continues to have one of the highest numbers of blue flags among Europe's shores

May 15, 2014 02:40 PM | ACN

89 beaches and 24 marinas in Catalonia are among those sharing the highest quality standards in Europe, since they have received a blue flag. This award is given for the quality of the water, the cleanness of the environment, easy access for people with mobility problems, the security services and other indicators. Last year, 90 beaches received a blue flag while this year Catalonia received one award less. Beaches on the Costa Brava kept their 28 blue flags, those on the Costa Daurada and the Ebro Delta also kept their 38 awards, but the coast of Barcelona went from 24 to 23 quality awards. Spain has received a total of 573 blue flags for its beaches and 108 for its marinas, a record, with 23 more beaches and 11 more marinas on the list. In this way, Spain continues to top the list among 48 states and 51 territories.

Employer’s association: new jobs and higher consumption not foreseen before late 2014

March 6, 2014 09:14 PM | ACN

The largest employer’s association in Catalonia, Foment del Treball, expects that the economic recovery in both Catalonia and the whole of Spain will not lead to a growth in employment and consumption until late 2014 or early 2015, as explained in the Report on the Economic Situation published on Thursday. The Director of Foment’s Economics and Taxation Department, Salvador Guillermo, said in a press conference that the economic recovery is being “consolidated”. Nevertheless, he added that ongoing structural reforms in the energy sector, public administration or the financial system should continue. According to Guillermo, the reduction of public deficit must be slowed down in order to avoid any negative impact on the economic recovery. 

Increase in consumption for this year’s winter sales

January 7, 2014 07:58 PM | ACN

For the first time since the beginning of the crisis, sales have already shown a “slight recovery” during Christmas, highlighted the President of Catalonia’s Confederation of Commerce (CCC), Miguel Ángel Fraile, who is “very optimistic” about the upcoming winter sales. Indeed, during the months of November and December, retail consumption have registered an increase of 2% and 3% compared to the previous year. It is expected that Catalans will spend a total of about €800 million during the winter sales, between 3% and 5% more than last year. These estimates by CCC also indicate that, on average, each citizen will spend €90 for the purchase of clothing items.

Unemployment in Catalonia grew by 9,253 in September but showed a 1.83% annual drop

October 2, 2013 10:34 PM | ACN

At Spanish level, unemployment increased both in monthly and annual terms. Catalonia is the Autonomous Community with the largest annual unemployment drop in absolute terms and the second highest in relative terms. The number of people registered as unemployed in Catalonia at the end of September dropped by 11,546 individuals compared to figures from a year ago, representing a 1.83% annual decrease. However, in monthly terms, registered unemployment increased by 1.51%, with 9,243 more jobseekers. September is a month with a traditional unemployment increase due to the end of summer season contracts. Last September’s unemployment increase was the lowest since 2008.

The Costa Brava’s music and theatre Festival of Porta Ferrada ends being an almost sold-out event

August 21, 2013 09:10 PM | ACN

The 51st edition of the International Festival of Porta Ferrada, located in the Costa Brava town of Sant Feliu de Guíxols, closed its doors with an average attendance of 91%. The event contained 21 music, theatre and dance performances, which had a total attendance of 11,105 people, 10,296 who paid for tickets and 890 going to the free events on offer. 6 shows were complete sell-outs: 5 of the 10 in the Espai Port (the main stage of the festival), and the ‘Concerts per a nadons’ (Concerts for babies). Albert Mallol, Artistic Director of the Porta Ferrada festival, told the CNA that it is important try to find new venues to be added to the iconic locations that already exist in order to increase the amount of musical and theatre performances.

Barcelona’s street decoration festival ‘Festa Major de Gràcia’ launches six days of concerts and partying

August 16, 2013 09:10 PM | ACN / Julian Scully

Barcelona’s famous annual street festival, ‘Festa Major de Gràcia’ kicked-off on Wednesday evening with streets intricately decorated by neighbours and live music being played well in to the night. The event, in its 197th year, draws an estimated 1.5 million visitors and has activities for all ages including: firework displays, ‘castellers’ - Catalan human towers, decorated streets and open air concerts taking place in 47 stages. It was traditionally a religious festival for locals of the neighbourhood, but for the last five decades it has become popular with Catalonians. Furthermore, in recent years, foreigners have also discovered it. Each year the festival begins on the 15th of August and lasts for six days.

Costa Brava’s Festival of Peralada Castle hosts the world premier of the chamber opera ‘Wow!’

August 14, 2013 09:00 PM | ACN

This Wednesday, the world premier of the chamber opera ‘Wow!’ takes place at the Festival of Peralada Castle, located in northern Catalonia’s Costa Brava. The libretto is inspired by texts written by Oscar Wilde and Walt Whitman, building a relationship between the two poets. The opera will be staged in the cloister of El Carme Church in Peralada, which has a capacity of 400 people. The play is structured in a single act with a prologue and four scenes. It explores the themes of dreaming, death, ascension and immortality. The score and the text are the work of Catalan composer García Demestres, while the stage director is Xavier Albertí, who is the new Director of the National Theatre of Catalonia (TNC).

Thousands of fans enjoy weekly music event Piknic Electronik in Barcelona

August 14, 2013 06:05 PM | Julian Scully

This summer, electronic music fans have the chance to enjoy a weekly music festival in Barcelona with renowned DJs such as Richie Hawtin, Joy Orbison, Claude Vonstroke and M.A.N.D.Y playing in a hillside park to thousands of attendees. The event, in its second year, takes place on Sunday afternoons 15 times during the summer in Barcelona’s Joan Brossa gardens with spectacular views over the city. The average attendance of each session is 2,500, “creating an intimate atmosphere”, according event organiser Jordi Ventura. “We have a loyal fan base, with the majority of attendees returning again and again because they enjoy it so much” he told the CNA.