Proctor en Segovia: Art and Style in Madrid and the Beautiful Game

Posted by Proctor en Segovia


Segovia sits 90 km north of Madrid, and the two cities are well connected by high-speed rail. Easy access to Madrid allows Proctor en Segovia students access to the culture, gastronomy, museums, and, yes, fútbol clubs of one of the largest cities in Europe. Ingrid W. '23 and Tony '23 write about a weekend excursion to Spain's capital and largest city.

Proctor en Segovia students learn about Spain through travel

Ingrid W. ‘23 - Madrid

As a city dweller, I was eager to start the week, especially since Madrid was on our itinerary twice. Our first visit was to the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, a world-renowned museum that stands out for its formality and popularity. While waiting for Luis to get us tickets, I was struck by the sea of well-dressed individuals walking by. Despite their diverse nationalities, all visitors seemed to pay attention to their fashion choices, from coats to perfumes. I recall a man in a vibrant green coat and dark brown pants, who walked with the grace of a model, his musky fragrance adding to his captivating presence. This emphasis on fashion is one of the many reasons I love this dynamic city so much.

Proctor en Segovia students travel to Madrid
Head of School, Brian Thomas, joins the Proctor en Segovia group at the Sorolla Museum in Madrid.

Walking through the galleries of light and shadow, we came across Pablo Picasso's renowned masterpiece, Guernica. The sheer size of the painting left me in awe. As I gazed at it for twenty minutes, I felt a deep connection to Picasso's message of opposition to war, as depicted through his subjects. Although the composition may appear chaotic, it only serves to reinforce the feeling of despair and helplessness in the face of bombing. After taking in the rich aroma of centuries-old paintings from various artists, I spent the rest of the day shopping with Ealing before concluding my visit. I can't wait to come back and explore Madrid again!

Proctor en Segovia students study art history
(Photo credit: Ingrid W. '23)

Tony ‘23 – Soccer

La Liga is renowned as one of the world's top football leagues, playing host to numerous talented players and iconic clubs like Barcelona and Real Madrid. Today, we are privileged to witness a match between Atletico Madrid and Getafe at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, the home of Atletico. As fans of this dynamic club, we admire stars like DePaul, Molina, Morata, and Griezmann. Our journey to the stadium took us nearly 90 minutes, but the excitement of finally being there was palpable. Stepping into the arena, I was in awe of the breathtaking scenery that surrounded me.

Proctor en Segovia students learn about European soccer
(Photo credit: Ingrid W. '23)

People have to admit that football stadiums are a testament to human engineering and design, deserving a place among the greatest structures in history. The electrifying roar of the crowd, the exhilarating applause and boos, and the stunning illumination of the arena all demonstrate the power of sport. Before entering the stadium, I couldn't imagine a sport with such universal appeal. Football has a unique ability to bridge differences and bring people together, transcending borders, race, and language.

As I walked into the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, I was greeted by a sea of red - the vibrant home colors of Atletico Madrid. The fans were dressed in their classic red and white jerseys, waving flags and cheering their team on. The whistle blew, and the game began with an air of excitement and anticipation. With the kick-off of Atletico Madrid, the red ocean in the audience shouted "Atletico!". This deafening and inspiring cry made us all yell involuntarily.

Proctor en Segovia students attend a soccer match in Madrid

The game in the first half was short-lived. Although neither side scored a goal, they played back and forth. Atletico Madrid's offense is overwhelming, but Getafe's defensive counterattack should not be underestimated. About 70 minutes into the second half, Atletico Madrid finally scored. Griezmann, the absolute core of France's championship in 2018 and the French Footballer of the Year, took a beautiful arc corner on the left, and Correa, our great Argentine striker, took the second after grabbing a shot from his teammate. After landing, he made a powerful shot on the right side of the penalty area, and the ball was sent into the net under the eyes of the goalkeeper like a fired shell. In an instant, all Atletico Madrid fans, old gentlemen, young children, or passionate middle-aged people all stood up, waving their jerseys or scarves, and shouted the "Atletico Madrid" Song.


However, Atlético didn't celebrate for long as a handball error by the defender resulted in a successful penalty shot. In the last ten minutes, although Atletico Madrid was on top, the score was still fixed at 1:1. Although the result is not satisfactory, the process is indeed wonderful. Even though they didn't score a goal in the first half, the physical strength of the professional players, the cheers of the fans, and the atmosphere of the stadium all made me linger. I hope we can watch another football game in Spain.

Proctor en Segovia students learn about local culture and traditions

Ingrid W. ‘23 - Zamarramala

On February 5th, we visited a village near Segovia known for its rich cultural heritage and traditions. The day was marked by the annual Festival de Santa Águeda, celebrated in honor of the sacrifices made by women of Zamarramala in 1227. According to legend, the Moors occupied the Alcázar fortress in Segovia, and while the men prepared to attack, the women of Zamarramala risked their lives to distract the occupants with dancing. To this day, the bravery of these women is celebrated annually in the form of the festival. We were privileged to witness the women dressed in traditional gowns, adorned with intricate patterns, earrings, and other trinkets, as they danced in the streets. The lively atmosphere, accompanied by the traditional songs, the smell of barbecued sausages and beers, created a warm and festive environment, bringing joy to all those present.

(Photo credit: Ingrid W. '23) 

Proctor Academy experiential learning in Spain
(Photo credit: Ingrid W. '23)

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