May is the time for masks in Lisbon. And no, we haven’t forgotten to turn the page on the calendar: if you think that masks and fancy dress are confined to the February carnival, it’s because you haven’t heard of the International Iberian Mask Festival (FIMI).
Brought to you by EGEAC and Progestur, the 13th edition of FIMI will be filling the Jardim da Praça do Império in Belém with some of the Iberian Peninsula’s
ancient pagan traditions. With the Mask (universal cultural heritage) as its central theme, the festival features costumes and masks from various Portuguese and Spanish regions, as well as gastronomy, handicrafts, concerts, workshops and even a photography competition.
Not to be missed is the main Iberian Mask Parade, which takes place on Saturday afternoon (19th) and which will involve hundreds of participants. At this year’s festival, the Portuguese and Spanish groups will be joined by Rei Mumbá from Brazil, The Mummers from Ireland and the Tumbarinos Pro Loco de Gavoi from Italy, proving that masks are a tradition present in all four corners of the world.
The concerts on the Iberian Stage will showcase traditional European folk, combined with elements of fusion. The 18th will see performances from the Irish group Bregia as well as Oscar Ibáñez & Tribo from Spain. Come the weekend, Portuguese groups will take the stage: Toques do Caramulo on Saturday, while Realejo will close the bill on Sunday afternoon.
There will also be a series of conversations with international guests on the subject of traditions related to these Masks which are so full of historical, cultural and artistic significance.
From the 17th to the 20th May, don’t miss this opportunity to see these merrymakers up close, and away from their usual setting, in a programme for all the family where constant entertainment is guaranteed.