Mallorcan culture matters

"Mallorca, you have taken my heart by storm."

Correfoc de Sant Sebastià, Palma

You’ll get island fever”, “you’ll die of boredom”, “one year is enough” were all reactions I received from friends and family when I told them of my decision to move to Mallorca. Clearly, my beaming Mallorca smile wasn’t enough to convince them.

I’ve been living on Mallorca for ten years now and not one moment of it has been boring or led me to consider leaving. I’m not drawn back to my home city of Munich (a rich cosmopolitan city) nor to any other European metropolis or exotic paradise – and I’ve travelled a lot around the world, always looking for the perfect place.

In fact, I landed in Palma ten years ago this autumn, and moved into my first apartment in Santa Catalina. At the time the tiny fishermen’s quarter was just starting its transition into the trendy neighbourhood we know today. Not a day passed without a new opening: restaurants, exhibitions and quirky shops were always springing up.

Mallorca is an island for creative people, artists and connoisseurs from all over the world. The more languages spoken, the wider the cultural scene becomes: from theatre productions in old town bars, pop events in luxury villas, fashion shows in palaces to concerts in remote bays, the variety of cultural events is broad. This is why Mallorca is creatively generous, aside from its own traditional Mallorcan festivities, it has a huge international cultural scene. The Swedish Santa Lucia performs in Plaza Cort at Christmas and the Sankt Martin rides on horseback through Puerto Portals following German tradition.

The Nit de l’Art is held every year in September and is hosted by a plethora of galleries. Every year gives us the chance to experience the current Mallorcan art scene and discover what has inspired a new wave of creatives. There is never a shortage of artwork to see.

Correfoc de Sant Sebastià, Palma

In winter, the Moscow State Ballet brings us classics such as the Nutcracker and Swan Lake to the auditorium, while performances from the Spanish ballet ensemble Victor Ullate bring another level of class. My current to-do list includes cinema programmes with films in original versions, as well as readings in different languages at bookstores and bodegas. It was only yesterday that I recalled an evening walk in January. I was walking along Paseo Marítimo to the cathedral when a loud drumming and banging took me by surprise. The dimonis started jumping around me with their flames and sparks flying. It was the celebration of Sant Sebastian, the patron saint of Palma, where a mixture of medieval tradition and modern madness come together. An extraordinary event.

Mallorca, you have taken my heart by storm. Every morning, when I’m walking my dogs near the old city wall I say “thank you”. Just looking at the history of the city is a privilege and offers so much to explore. I believe the island’s true beauty shows in autumn when the beaches are quieter and the artists unveil their work – a season to be fully enjoyed on Mallorca.

Written by Sabrina Kolbe