Good Friday in Adeje – Tenerife

Every year on Good Friday, the town of Adeje re-enacts the Life and Passion of Jesus Christ. Large numbers of residents dress the part and tell the story of the last days of his life.

I did not make it this year, as I had to collect friends from the airport, but having been in the past I feel it is something anyone can appreciate whether they are religious or not. Hundreds of people flock to the town to see the spectacle, reputedly over 23,000 this year that has to be an indication of how good it is.

If you take the car, you need to be early for any chance of parking.  Give it a couple of hours and you may be lucky.  You also stand a better chance of finding a good spot although there are huge screens in the plaza and a sound system that carries right across the town as the whole event is televised for Canarian TV.

The attention to detail is impeccable all road signs, telephone booths and zebra crossings are disguised by leaves so that apart from the shop fronts, that nothing much can be done about, you feel you have stepped back in time to Jerusalem.  The backdrop of mountains and the gentle swaying of the palm trees add to the illusion and so the stage is set.

At 12:00 sharp, the music strikes up and a hush falls over the crowd as the enactment starts with the main characters at the last supper.  Cameras click furiously as Jesus is betrayed, the mob take him to Pontius Pilate, he is flogged and crowned with thorns then paraded through the streets carrying his cross.  The whole experience is very realistic with lots of blood and gore.  Mary and Mary Magdalene cry uncontrollably, in fact all the main characters play their part extremely well.  Jesus is the only professional actor and going by the professional photographs (see link below) he does it regularly as he played Jesus last year when I was there.

The whole procession takes around two hours and everyone who had been lining the streets and following the Stations of the Cross down the main road gather close to the town square for the stunning finale when Christ is crucified.  There are tears from the actors and tears from the crowd who are genuinely moved.   Finally, Christ is taken down from the cross and an effigy placed on a litter and carried back up to the church.

So with an idea of what to expect I hope you get a chance to see The Passion in Adeje.  My photos are a couple of years old but do check out the professional photos on Facebook


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One Response to Good Friday in Adeje – Tenerife

  1. There were three (other) professional actors: Nacho Almenara, who played Herod; Juan Aguiar, St John; and Baltasar Isla, Judas. José Antonio López plays Jesus, and has done for six years now, but I’m not sure that he is actually a professional actor … the press says not, but he’s clearly involved in drama in some way!

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