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The Esbart Santa Tecla is an association that was created in 1971, at a time when no cultural activities took place in Tarragona, and there were no entities related to the study and maintenance of Catalan customs and traditions.

Since its creation the principal activities of the Esbart Santa Tecla have been centred on:

  • The study, work, research and development of folkdances, traditions, folk music in general, and its typical instruments.
  • The contribution to choreographic creations and dances, in order to universalise the personality of Catalonia, with respect to its folkdances.
  • The promotion of the values of the customs and traditions by means of lecture and audiovisual methods.
  • The contribution to the expansion and projection of the historical and actual personality of the city of Tarragona.
  • The humane and civic training of its components, by means of cultural and artistic work.
  • The need to stimulate, in children, interest and esteem for the values of the customs and traditions of the city of Tarragona and of Catalonia.

These guidelines are translated into the multiple initiatives that have been fulfilled throughout our history, of which we wish to emphasize the following:

  • During the initial years of our existence, when it was necessary to protect our language, books and dictionaries in Catalan were distributed between members.
  • The "Ball de Bastons" of Tarragona was retrieved in 1975 to avoid its disappearance.
  • The active collaboration in the reappearance of the "Seguici Popular" of Santa Tecla (considered to be one of the most important of Catalonia), participating with the "Ball de Bastons", the "Ball del Patatuf", the "Ball de Cercolets", the "Ball de Turcs i Cavallets" and the "Ball de Valencians" as retrieved dances of Tarragona and the "grallas" folk music group.

  • The creation of the "Retaule de Santa Tecla" (a homage to the Patron Saint of Tarragona which is represented by the Esbart every year inside the Cathedral).
  • The participation in the Tarragona Carnival with "La Mascarada de l’Estudiant".
  • The edition of different books, such as "El Ball de Bastons a Tarragona" written by Jordi Bertran and the collaboration in the publication of "El Ball del Patatuf" by Montserrat Garrich and Anna Viñoles, "El Ball de Turcs i Cavallets" by Eloi Miralles, "El Ball de Cercolets" by Montserrat Garrich and the "Ball de Valencians" by Jordi Bertran.
  • The debut of the concerts of Catalan folkdance by the "Muralles de Tarragona" followed up by the "Nit de Dansa Catalana" with the presentation of the "Danses de Nova Creació".
  • Various social activities such as:

    - The publication of an internal bulletin ("Tornem-hi") that informs members, on a monthly basis, about activities and news related to the entity.

    - The Christmas Festival, organized on a yearly basis to reunite members just before Christmas.

    - Sport competitions and championships.

    - The organization of excursions with camping for the smallest members who are taken each year to a different geographical part of Catalonia. Excursions during holidays (Halloween, Saint John, etc…), and other visits ("Saló de la Infància de Barcelona" organized yearly, etc..).

These activities help the Esbart to be a place that is not exclusively for rehearsals, but also a meeting place and somewhere to have fun and increase personal social relationships.

Over the years the Esbart has organized meetings, courses, seminaries, conferences and expositions, and has also collaborated in the main cultural manifestations of Tarragona, thus converting itself into an entity that offers services to all citizens.

Finally, we would like to emphasize that the Esbart Santa Tecla forms part of different entities, such as the "Obra del Ballet Popular", the "Agrupament d’Esbarts Dansaires de Catalonia" and is one of the founders of the "Agrupació d’Esbarts de les Comarques Meridionals".

It is for this reason that we are proud of the different prizes that we have received during our history, which morally recompense the effort fulfilled, encouraging us to continue working and thinking about future projects. Amongst the prizes received we would like to highlight the one given to us in 1987 by Radio Tarragona which acknowledged us as one of the entities that had most worked in name of the city; the "Premi Nacional de Cultura Popular" in 1991 of the Generalitat de Catalonia and the prize "El Balcó, 1993" given by "Òmnium Cultural".

Apart for the multiple representations in the different regions of Catalonia, the Esbart Santa Tecla has offered its shows of Catalan folkdance in cities such as: Alguer (Italy), Orleans, Blois, Avinyon, Lyon and Perpignon (France), Aveiro (Portugal), Luxemburg, Monaco, different towns in Switzerland and Austria, as well as Gijon, Palencia Castellon, Aranjuez, Lucena, Sabiñánigo, Alcoy, Andorra, Ibiza and others.

This is an example of the spirit of the Esbart Santa Tecla, which is presented as an entity that is full of life, with projects and the will to maintain the culture and traditions of Catalonia, and in particular those of the city of Tarragona.