krampus in graz was an unplanned, unexpected amazing surprise! we just happened to be in the right place at the right time: exactly where the krampuslauf (krampus run) was starting, on the 1st of december!
krampus is an alpine character, the opposite of saint nicholas. if the latter brings gifts to good kids, the former takes the bad kids in his sack. the pre-christian tradition was fused into the religious calendar sometime in the 17th century.
the procession of the devil monsters was awesome! wearing animal skins and paralyzingly terrifying masks, the devils advanced little by little to give everybody a chance to take in the horror.
their dramatic presence was strengthened by their violent outbursts and attacks. even if i was 100% certain of the fact that they were people in disguise, i couldn’t help myself seeing them as primitive monstrous creatures! the impact was emphasized by fire blowing, smoke and sound effects. the costumes were made of goat skins so the air was full of that oddly familiar animal smell. a complex successful effort!
the monsters were acting out and pretended to hit us with their sticks. some of them were charging and you found yourself face to face with a huge scary mask. aaaah! it was harmless, but efficient nonetheless. also, they tried to scare the kids by invading their private space only to stop and reach out a friendly clawed paw to shake their little hands. really sweet, right?
i was very entertained by the event. i’m super happy i was there in time!
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photo: little aesthete
video credits: copyright holders