Put the butter back in the fridge, the hot cross buns back in the bread bin and head to Adeje town for the real meaning of Easter. Those chocolate eggs will wait till later but even the most cynical of you will regret not experiencing the Good Friday (2nd April) street theatre that is The Passion.
The last hours and crucifixion of Christ are about to be played out for you in a stunning piece of street theatre that involves a whole town. It’s best to arrive in good time, partly to get a good vantage point, but also to feel the sense of anticipation as thousands line the road waiting for the noon start. Calle Grande meanders down from the town hall and the cool tree lined streets add to the intimacy and shared wonder that is to unfold.
Preparations go on for months, a cast of hundreds, adults, children and even livestock have been building up to this morning. Lamp posts and balconies are draped with red sashes and small stages at intervals down the road hint at the key scenes in this biblical epic. Prompt at noon trumpets sound and clopping hoofs herald the arrival at the top of the road of roman centurions, some on foot and some on horseback. Following behind in regal splendour the emperor and his wife are carried on their thrones with followers in sandals mixing composure with nifty footwork to avoid hazards left by the horses.
The procession makes way at the first stage, as the first tableau springs to life with The Last Supper taking place. The only professional actor in the event is Jesus but all the key players are wired up with microphones so the crowds can hear the dialogue and strident music on a series of speakers all the way down the road. As the story moves on we see Jesus betrayed by Judas in the garden of Gethsemane.
The power and realism are pretty graphic, be warned young children could find it very disturbing. The next scene is the court room, crowds press for better views as Jesus is sentenced, stripped by the guards and whipped. Disciples and supporters wail and protest but he is forced to take up his cross and carry it down the last stretch of road and nailed to the cross. The sombre silence is electric as the cross is raised high, every contortion and cry of pain captured by the television cameras and relayed into thousands of homes by the local station.
Regardless of your own religious convictions, or lack of them, the two hour tour de force is always gripping and a real insight into the faith and commitment of the local community.