Various cultural events commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of the author of Don Quixote
22 April is the 400th anniversary of Miguel de Cervantes’ death, and tributes are being paid to the author of Don Quixote in the city where he was born, Alcalá de Henares, as well as in the Spanish capital, in the form of theatre productions, guided tours and a Cervantes train, among other activities.
Via the Madrid Destino Tourism Department, Madrid City Council is offering guided tours of Miguel de Cervantes’ tomb throughout 2016.
The itinerary includes a visit to the Church of San Ildefonso in the Convent of the Barefoot Trinitarians, which houses a commemorative monument containing Miguel de Cervantes’ remains, which were discovered in the convent’s crypt. In his Last Will and Testament, Cervantes requested that he be buried in the convent as an expression of his gratitude towards the Trinitarians, who freed him from five and a half years of captivity in Algiers (Algeria) at the hands of Berber pirates.
Aboard the traditional train, which runs between Alcalá de Henares and Madrid, travellers are accompanied by characters from the Spanish Golden Age whose grievances liven up the journey. The season began on Saturday 2 April and will last until 11 June.
Teatro Español’s programme includes a production of Numancia by Cervantes, one of the best Spanish Renaissance tragedies ever written.
On Frogs and Men of Letters…
On 2 April Madrid’s Barrio de las Letras (Literary Quarter) hosted the first edition of Day of the Frogs: art, children’s activities and tasting sessions in the neighbourhood’s shops and galleries. This year the event honoured Cervantes.
Alcalá de Henares is also offering tours of the Cervantes Birthplace Museum and open-door sessions at Teatro Salón Cervantes. The theatre, with its modernist facade, was built in 1888 in 29 days on a lot segregated from the former Capuchin Convent.
What is more, beginning on 29 March audiences can enjoy the El teatro en la época de Cervantes series of dramatised lectures, held at the Corral de Comedias de Alcalá theatre.