PICK OF THE WEEK: Andorra (Pyrenees)

Main places:

Andorra la VellaEscaldes-EngordanySan Julia de LoriaLa MassanaOrdinoEncampCanilloPas de la Casa

PICK OF THE WEEK: Monday 17th – Sunday, 23rd December, 2018

Christmas Village in Andorra la Vella is here for the third year. Lots of activities, especially for children, plus stalls with art work etc.


Tuesday, 18th December at 19h at the Cinemes Illa Carelemany, Escaldes–Engordany. Opera Direct from the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Barcelona. L’italiana in Algeri a comic opera by Directed by Vittorio Borrelli, Conducted by Riccardo Frizza and Starring Luca Pisaroni as Mustafà and Varduhi Abrahamyan as Isabella. For the festive season, the Liceu presents slyness and sex appeal in this amusing comedy. L’italiana in Algeri espouses the cause of women’s rights through the resourceful way its protagonist, Isabella, deals with the coarse Mustafà. Rossini was only 21 when he triumphed with this two-act farce, which consolidated his personal style and his status as the rightful heir of 18th-century opera buffa. Great arias and dazzling ensembles – like the one punctuated by onomatopoeia at the end of the first act – are just a few of the gourmet dishes on this hilarious Rossini menu. It has been 36 years since L’italiana in Algeri was last seen at the Liceu.


Monday, 17th December at 22h at the Hotel Màgic, La Massana. (Free) Vibrand concert in Clau de Soul. On Mondays the week starts with the best vibrations, with live music and with songs you like to sing!We are waiting for you to enjoy a concert that is born of soul and goes through different styles such as funky, bag, jazz, reggae trip hop …, from the successes of current and ever performers such as Jamiroquai, Sting, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Bruno Mars, Amy Winehouse, Nina Simone, Joss Stone, Adele and Tom Jobim. Vibrand will also be:

  •  On Thursday at 20.30h at the Hotel Piolets in the centre of          Soldeu, Saturday, 22nd at 21.30 at Anyós Park, La Massana and finally at 18h at the Poble de Nadal, Plaça del Poble, Andorra la Vella,          with their Concert in Clau de Nadal (In Key of Christmas).
  • Wednesday, 19th December at 21.30h at The Cabin, Arinsal. Concert by the band, Shuffle Express. Traditional and contemporary blues night in different styles (swing, rock, shuffle, calypso …) versions of artists such as BB King, Muddy Waters, Junior Wells, Joe Bonamassa, Susan Tedeschi and Jr.Watson, among others, with some compositions of the band.Musicians: Pablo Villar (vocals and guitar);  Virginia Yañez (keyboard and vocals);  Marc Milian (bass and sound);  Dante Falótico (percussion).
  • Thursday, 20th December at 18h at the Teatre de Les Fontetes, La Massana, Christmas performance by the Valls del Nord Music School.
  • Thursday, 20th December at 19h at La Llacuna Cultural Center, Andorra la Vella. (5€) Far away places. Concert of South American and Oriental music. An encounter between the Chinese composer and cellist Kim-ho Ip and the Brazilian accordionist Otavio Assis Brasil.
  • Thursday, 20th December at 20h at the Farga Rossell, La Massana. (2.50€) El Cor de Rock d’Encamp celebrates Christmas in La Farga. El Cor de Rock of Encamp is the only choir of a state school in Andorra dedicated to the interpretation of choral versions of pop music, rock and hit lists.Their repertoire is based on musical themes arranged for three and four voices in combination with choreographic elements.The group will offer a Christmas concert at the Farga Rossell, where they will be interpreting songs from their usual repertoire and carols known to all. The choir was created to promote choral singing among adolescents as a means of personal development in values ​​such as friendship, solidarity and volunteering. In this way, Cor de Rock of Encamp has sung from its beginnings in the nursing homes of Andorra la Vella and collaborates with humanitarian organizations such as Intermón Oxfam, the Solidarity project with Bolivia (Cooperand), the Andorran Association: Music to live, in aid of children in Nicaragua. This represents for young singers a unique opportunity for personal enrichment through music and a show of solidarity with others. The adolescents’ choir is based on diversity and welcomes students of different origins and nationalities who respond to diverse cultural and social realities. This is basically a reflection of Andorran society as present in the educational system. Since its creation in 2009, the Cor de Rock d’Encamp has performed in Andorra, Spain and France in social, cultural and musical events and has participated in exchanges with choirs in other countries; they even travelled to Glasgow and New York!
  • Thursday, 20th December at 22h at the Hard Rock Cafe, Andorra la Vella. (Free) Concerts at Hard Rock Cafe Andorra with Sander Clasen. Sander Clasen is a multi-instrumentalist who will take us on a sound trip with his voice, guitar and saxophone.

Friday, 21st December at 21h at the Centre de Congressos, Andorra la Vella. (Free but by invitation only. Collect your invitation from La Llacuna Cultural Center, Andorra la Vella.) Lluís and Gerard Claret – 50 years on stage. Andorra la Vella pays homage to the twins Gerard and Lluís Claret for a musical career of undeniable artistic quality spread over half a century. Programming this concert is, for the Comú d’Andorra la Vella, a matter of pride that aims to offer recognition to the brilliant career of two Andorran musicians who have taken their virtuosity around the world.Delighting us with their interpretations comes as a gift for the spectators. Congratulations to the Claret brothers for these 50 years from the Mayor of Andorra la Vella, Conxita Marsol Riart.

LLUÍS CLARET – Cellist. Born in the Principality of Andorra in 1951, from exiled Catalan parents, his musical studies were inspired by his godfather, Pau Casals. Later, the family moved to Barcelona, ​​where he studied at the Conservatori del Liceu. For many years he received classes from Enric Casals, brother of Pau, who, despite not being a cellist, became his main mentor and musical father. He won First prize in the Pau Casals and Mstislav Rostropovich competitions. His career has been projected around the world, as a soloist and as a great lover of chamber music (founder of the Trio de Barcelona, ​​member of the Berlin Trio and duo with Josep Maria Colom). His deep pedagogical vocation allowed him to be a teacher for more than 20 years at the Conservatory of Toulouse Languadoc and 10 years at the Victòria dels Àngels Conservatory of Sant Cugat del Vallès. He regularly gives master classes in Europe, America and Asia. He is currently a professor at the Superior Conservatory of the Liceu in Barcelona and at the New England Conservatory in Boston. He also gives an annual master class in VIU (Valencia International University) and at the Talent Music Masters Academy in Brescia (Italy). His celo is a Nicolas Lupot (Paris 1820)

          GERARD CLARET – Violinist. Born in Andorra in 1951. Since the beginning of his professional activity, more than fifty years ago, he has      been noted for his double role as an interpreter and pedagogue.         Winner of the Belgian Radio and Television Tenuto competition, and          the medal of the Maria Canals International Competition in    Barcelona, ​​  he has performed with orchestras from Spain, France,           Belgium, Holland, Italy, the former Czechoslovakia, Turkey, Russia          and Japan.         He is the founder of the Music School of Barcelona, ​​the          International Music Course of Vic and the Trio of Barcelona, ​​with      whom he has recorded works by Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Dvorak. From 2000 to 2005 he ran the School of Music of Catalonia (ESMUC). He has     been the artistic director of the Narciso Yepes Ordino International Festival since its creation, and of the Crèdit Andorrà Foundation. In 1993, he became concertino director of the National Classical Orchestra of Andorra (ONCA). In September 2000, he founded the National Youth Chamber Orchestra of Andorra (Jonca), which, like ONCA, is dependent on the ONCA Foundation, managed by the Government of Andorra and the Crèdit Andorrà Foundation. Between 2007 and 2012, he was a tutor of the music area of ​​the Trivium, a performing arts center in Sant Julià de Lòria. In 1998 he was awarded the Creu de Sant Jordi (the Cross of Saint George) of the Generalitat de Catalunya. In 2010, he was appointed Andorra’s Unicef national ambassador.

Programme :

Duet for violin and cello in re major
          Little Adagio 
Minute weather


MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937)
Sonata for violin and cello
(In the memory of Claude Debussy)
Très vif
Vif, with entrain

ZOLTAN KODÁLY (1882-1967)
Duo op.7 for violin and cello
          Allegro serious, not troppo

          Maestoso and long, but not slow troppo – Presto

  • Friday, 21st December at 21h at the Teatre Les Fontetes, La Massana. Christmas Concert of the Cor de l’Ópera d’Andorra with the participation of the Esbart folkdance group and School of Music of the Valls del Nord (Valleys of the North i.e. La Massana and Ordino.)

Friday, 21st December at 23h at the Món Bohemi, La Massana. The Soundsets in concert at Món Bohemi. The Soundsets is an Andorran–Barcelonan music group that covers popular versions of the best-known, current and most hits. Their own characteristic style is influenced by rumba, reggae, salsa and other Latin rhythms.

  • Saturday, 22nd December at 18h in the Hotel Antic, La Cortinada, Ordino. Classical Ordino: Music in a cup. In winter, too, classical music lives on.


  • Monday 17th to Thursday, 20th December at 20h at the Cinemes Illa Carlemany, Escaldes-Engordany. Mortal Engines. (English with Spanish subtitles.) Directed by Christian Rivers. Starring Hera Hilmar, Robert Sheehan, Hugo Weaving. The Story: In a post-apocalyptic world where cities ride on wheels and consume each other to survive, two people meet in London and try to stop a conspiracy.  


  • Monday, 17th December at 17.30h at the Public Library, Pas de la Casa. Write a letter to Father Christmas and the Kings. A workshop in which you can write a letter to Father Christmas and the Magi. And it will not be any letter, because you can write, not only about those toys that you want, but also write messages asking for special things. And you can decorate it to make it unique!And if you wish, you can leave your letter in the royal box that you will find in the library.
  • Monday, 17th December at 18h at the Public Library, Encamp. Storytelling: The Magic of Father Christmas. A new storytelling session. On this occasion, Vanessa Silva will tell the children a story about how the Sea knew Father Christmas very well but shehad never seen him very close. The story explains that there are few people who have. He travels just one single night a year, on Christmas Eve, when everyone is asleep.
  • Wednesday, 19th December at 18h at the Public Library of Escaldes-Engordany. (Free for families with children aged 4 or 5. For more information and reservations: 802 256). Storytelling: Christmas Stories with Granny Nona. Christmas is coming and Granny Nona is waiting for us to read her storybook. But she has a small problem, she easily nods off to sleep. Can you help us wake her up?
  • Wednesday, 19th December from 16.30h – 20h at the Centre de Interpretació del Comapredosa, Arinsal. (Pre-booking essential made to [email protected] or 837 111) Small workshops for Christmas recycling. An activity for the whole family.
  • Friday, 21st December at 17.30h at the bookshop, Entre Linies, La Massana. Storytelling: Les Gallines d’Aristot (The Hens of Aristotle) explained by the author Isidre Domenjó from the collection El Petit Pirineu (Saloria Publishing House).What is special about Aristotle’s hens?
  • Friday, 21st December at 18h at the Public Library of Pas de la Casa. Storytelling: Christmas snack with a new storytelling session for a family audience. On this occasion, the chosen story is The Christmas Snack by Estel Baldó. History tells us howan original and poetic atmosphere, the savannah, and with a twilight light, a group of wild animals (an elephant, a giraffe, a lion, a zebra and an owl) celebrated a Christmas snack with the typical products of Andorran tradition: nougat, neules*, marzipan … The Christmas star will accompany them in this celebration. And when the story is finished we can taste all the products that appear in it!(*Neules come from the Middle Ages and are made with a wafer thin mixture of flour, egg white, butter, sugar and lemon, cooked on a griddle and rolled up so it looks like a hollow cigar.
  • Saturday, 22nd December at 19h at the Museum Casa Areny-Plandolit, Ordino. (For children aged 4 – 12 with an obligatory accompanying adult. Tickets: 4€ for children. Entrance for the accompanying adult is free.) The Story of Ona and Laia: a voyage into Andorra of the past. Ona and Laia are two sisters who, while their parents dose, draw and sing quietly. Without knowing it, everything Ona draws and Laia sings will become a reality. And this will be an unexpected adventure: a trip to Andorra from the past. Meet Peter, a boy who will show us the old Andorra before explaining some of the uses and customs, legends, traditions and ways of living from that time. He will help the girls to value what they have and learn more about their unique little country.
  • Until Monday, 24th December at 18h at the Plaça del Consell, Encamp and at the Tourist Office of Pas de la Casa. Advent Calendar 2018. Each day these two Calendars will open one of their windows to give sweets to the attendees and to remind the youngest that every day Christmas is getting closer when they can open the gifts left by Father Christmas. A few years ago, the Comú retrieved this tradition so much enjoyed by the littlest. The tradition has its origins in the 1920s, when chocolate was hidden behind the windows.


  • Wednesday, 19th December at 18h in the Sala de la Closeta, La Massana. Fifth ‘Intergenerational’ of La Massana organized by the Department of Youth and Social Services of the La Massana Comú. (Looks like it might include Bingo. CA)
  • Saturday, 22nd December at 11h at the Tobacco Museum, Sant Julià de Lòria. (3€ for adults. Children free. Limited places. Reservations by phone to 741 545.The Escape Room is aimed at children aged between 5 and 12 who are accompanied by an adult.) Escape Room at the Tobacco Museum.Do you want to enter rooms full of hidden secrets? During Escape Room sessions, attendees will travel to Andorra from way back in 1918, and they will find Pure and Cali, two cigarette makers looking for a way to exterminate the plague of moths that is destroying Andorra’s tobacco plantations The assistants will have to help Cali and the Pure to find the antidote, solving tests of ingenuity, dexterity, deduction and reasoning, among others, so as to exterminate the moth in less than one hour. Pura and Cali will be there!

Culturally yours,



Look for about the author of the blog Clare Allcard

See also Andorra travel guide

See also Pyrenees travel guide

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See also Spain travel guide

Read more: What to do today? Cultural events in Andorra with Clare Allcard ...