The People of the Silves Medieval Fair 2014

The Medieval Fair at Silves is a must-see on the annual Algarve calendar for us – and what makes it so special are the people that we meet there each year. Some of them have become like friends to us – and many belong the wonderful Viv’Arte troupe that deliver such authentic performances and bring such life to the Fair:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

So we thought we would share with you this year many of the faces and characters of the Fair – starting with our friend Laura .. and some of her friends … 

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

The age range of the group is very impressive:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

From young – to slightly older – all working together to provide a great spectacle:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

It’s all taken very seriously too!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And the costumes are stunning:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And very lifelike:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Many of the actors can be captured before they begin the nightly parade through the city:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

They often seem to be lost in thought – and history:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

They certainly brighten up the place with their costumes!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Although this guy always seems to have the brightest outfits – and the heaviest headgear!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Here’s the lovely Laura with another of her friends:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

The cast aim to recreate the historical events of the city between 1053 and 1246. In 1053 Silves was conquered by Al-Mu’tadid, the king of Seville, and the city was filled with poets, music and feasting, and wealthy merchants, a life illustrated most notably by the local poet Ibn Ammar, in his ‘Homage to Silves’.

In 1189 the city was attacked by Don Sancho I of Portugal, with the help of the knights of the Third Crusade, and the Muslims surrendered. Many battles and ‘changes of ownership’ ensued, until 1246 when the city was finally conquered by D. Afonso III who granted the city its first charter.

A rich history – full of colour, pageant and battles – and all brought back to life for 10 days each year!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Each night reflects a different section of the city’s history and story:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And each year a different part of this rich history is given a special focus, complete with drama and rich costumes to match:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

The attention to detail is most impressive.

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And all overseen by the watchful eye of ‘The Boss’ of the troupe – who is most elusive when there is a camera around!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

But it’s not just the Viv’Arte group that dress up – the stallholders all enter into the spirit of the show with elaborate costumes and brightly decorated stalls:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Our favourite is always the engaging and delightful Sergio Silva – now that man knows how to pose for the camera!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

There are also street musicians to entertain you – in traditional period costume playing folk and medieval music like the Al Medievo group:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

There is music and dancing almost on every corner for you to enjoy:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And the musicians seem to enjoy the event as much as the crowd:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

You can turn a corner and find yourself enthralled by a dancer:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Or wait on the steps of the Cathedral for a performance to begin:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

This is the wonderful Eduardo who together with his group, plays for the Oriental belly dancers – he is such a gifted musician and such a humble gentle man:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

The Escola de Dança Oriental – led by Denise de Carvalho –  are a vibrant, energetic and wonderful group of dancers:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

So much colour and movement to enjoy:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And so much emotion is portrayed:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

As an artist – I found them very inspiring!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

And all around are actors and dancers and musicians to entertain you and fill the streets with colour and life:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Even the statues in the water are given a make-over:

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

So to everyone that helps to make this the wonderful, vibrant and enthralling spectacle that it is each year – we thank you!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

Until next year!

If you have enjoyed this post – you might also enjoy seeing more of the Stalls and Shopping from this year’s Fair … and we will be adding another post soon!

For more stunning shots of the People of Silves Medieval Fair – you might also like to check out Dave’s Photography website:

Feira Medieval de Silves – the People Shots!

Silves Medieval Fair 2014

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7 Responses to The People of the Silves Medieval Fair 2014

  1. Rusha Sams says:

    Love those close-up faces and their seriousness. I’ve never heard of this event, so thanks for bringing it out in such a colorful way.

  2. Margaret Runciman says:

    Once again you have posted a really interesting blog ,giving both the present info about Silves and the historical context . These ‘people’ photos are absolutely spectacular ! They give the feel of history brought to life . A very big thank you to you both . ( Just loved the dressed-up statues too ! )

    Ayr, Scotland

    >

  3. This was a wonderful post! Thank you.

  4. Pingback: Silves Medieval Fair 2015 | Algarve Blog

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