January 23, 2021

The Casa de Colón celebrates the theatrical reenactment in verse of the Battle of Las Palmas on Saturday


A moment from one of the rehearsals of The Battle of Las Palmas

A moment from one of the rehearsals of The Battle of Las Palmas

The Casa de Colón finally celebrates on Saturday January 9 the theatrical reenactment in verse of Francis Drake’s attack and attempt to conquer Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in 1595, when the 425th anniversary of this event is celebrated. This event, suspended in November by Health and in December due to rain, will take place on this occasion in the Gabriel Rodó Hall of the headquarters of the Gran Canaria Philharmonic Orchestra, located on the Paseo Príncipe de Asturias in the capital of Gran Canaria.

Some of the actors from La Batalla de Las Palmas dressed in period costume


The activity is scheduled for two functions, at 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., with a capacity of 90 people per session. Tickets for both passes are sold out. The initiative ‘The battle of Las Palmas. Carta al rey ‘is organized by the Casa de Colón, with the participation of the groups El Ómnibus: Teatro del Pueblo, the Association for the Disclosure of the History of the Canary Islands (ADHICA) of Santa Brígida and the Cultural Association of Historical Fencing of Las Palmas, and the collaboration of the National Reference Center of Las Palmas and Diameter Radio.

This amateur stage performance, which includes the interpretation of various musical pieces and dances of the time, is directed by the historian Fernando Becerra, also author of this piece made from texts by Viera y Clavijo, Néstor Álamo and Manuel Lobo, Adrián Santana has joined the direction and dramaturgy.

One of the actors in one of the rehearsals of the reenactment


Around thirty people of different ages will allow attendees to take a trip back in time for about an hour to relive one of the events that have marked the history of the capital of Gran Canaria, and for this they will also wear 16th century costumes.

The original work recounts the experiences of the city’s inhabitants on the fateful October 6, 1595, when the large British fleet, made up of 27 ships and some three thousand men under the command of Francis Drake, decided to attack it. Thanks to a heroic defense of the citizenship, organized by the island’s military governor, Alonso de Alvarado, his civilian lieutenant Antonio de Pamochamoso, and the militias made up of soldiers and the common people, the capital could be saved.

Two actors during a rehearsal in the Vegueta area


This feat, which even Lope de Vega collected in his ‘Dragontea’, was achieved with only 1,500 men, most of them civilians and without military training, who stood up to the large deployment of the English, who ended up withdrawing due to the offensive.

The famous pirate made his name as a military man by looting Spanish ports in the Caribbean when England and the Spanish Empire weren’t even officially at war. The battle that was fought in Las Palmas was motivated by the lack of food and drinking water that its fleet suffered on its journey to America. Drake died a year after his failed attempt to take Gran Canaria.

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