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A ‘space walker’ interacts with a child and (RIGHT) Barney, a purple Tyrannosaurus Rex from American children’s television series, entertains the crowd during the Eid celebrations at The Mall yesterday. (PICTURES: SHAIVAL DALAL)
BY RAYNALD C RIVERA
DOHA: Mall shows, which have been a major highlight of this year’s Eid Al Fitr celebrations organised by the Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), have proved a success increasing footfall in shopping centres playing host to these events.
Today is the last day for shopping malls and commercial centres to host entertaining events which include parades, folklore bands, Space Walkers performance, African Circus, a play for kids, BreaksK8 and Barney Sing Along show-a popular children musical.
“Unlike before when only limited shows were held in selected malls, this year is much better because there are more shows and more malls have also participated,” said Maya, a Lebanese national who was watching a parade together with her children at the Royal Plaza yesterday.
The group of artistes coming from Lebanon was mobbed by over a hundred children having their pictures taken while watching the ensemble composed of musicians, stiltwalkers, a juggler and a mime artiste play music and some tricks during the 30-minute parade around the mall.
Maya added it would be a good idea to hold it yearly not only in major malls but all shopping centres.
A saleslady of a garment shop at the mall said the shows definitely have played a major role in drawing more people to the mall especially because the shows were mainly for children who would go together with the entire family.
Another such show was the popular Barney Sing Along show where Barney together with friends Baby Bop and BJ entertained hundreds of children at The Mall last night.
The purple dinosaur never failed to bring smiles to children’s faces who eagerly awaited him perform popular songs from the TV series.
The Mall was filled with the voices of children who knew the songs by heart while they sang along with Barney and his friends.
For Gale, a first time mum, more than an hour of waiting was worth it although the show lasted for only 20 minutes.
“My three-year-old daughter has been waiting to see Barney in person and her dream finally came true tonight,” she said.
The shows start from 4pm and runs until 10pm at participating malls which include The Mall, Royal Plaza, Landmark Mall, Hyatt Plaza and Al Khor Mall. The mall shows were just part of the many activities organised by the QTA which for the first time has collaborated with key institutions in Qatar.
Other events include fireworks display and exhibitions in Katara; ‘Qatari 60%’ play at the Qatar National Theatre; live concerts at Al Rayyan Theatre and traditional performances, arts and crafts and heritage events at the Heritage Village.