Fans mourn, opponents cheer Barcelona's last bullfight

Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:27am EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Alice Tozer

BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) - Spain's top matador and two colleagues were carried out on the crowd's shoulders after the last bullfight to be held in Barcelona on Sunday.

But the victory belonged to opponents of the "corrida," who had successfully campaigned for the emblematic Spanish spectacle to be banned in the Catalonia region.

It was a day of high emotion in the separatist-inclined Catalan capital, Spain's second city.

All 20,000 seats in the historic La Monumental arena were sold out in advance and touts were charging 1,600 euros for tickets, three times the face value of the top price

The event marked an impassioned debate over bullfighting which has highlighted political, cultural and economic divisions in modern Spain.

Fans, a number of whom had come from abroad, lamented the ban and said it was stifling tradition and people's rights.

"This is like a dictatorship. We don't do anything wrong to anyone and we are banned from having a 300 year-old show," Josep Navarro, 60, a longtime fan, told Reuters.

But opponents celebrated the last day of "death in the afternoon" in Catalonia and said they would push their campaign for other regions to follow.   Continued...

<p>Spanish bullfighter Jose Tomas performs a pass during the last bullfight at Monumental bullring in central Barcelona September 25, 2011. Fans and opponents of bullfighting crowded into Barcelona on Sunday for the last "corrida" to be held in the city's La Monumental arena following a ban on the traditional Spanish spectacle in Catalonia. REUTERS/Albert Gea</p>