The visitors to Sharjah Water Festival 2012 are finding themselves bowled over by the consummate art and magic of celebrated puppeteers from around the world. While Al Majaz Park, the venue of the Water Festival, has a great deal to offer the visitors by way of international entertainment and new attractions including the immensely popular Russian Circus on Water and Mouj Fantasy on Mouj Island, this year the organisers have managed to bring together some of the most accomplished masters of puppetry from around the world to Sharjah.

The World Puppet Stage of the SWF 2012, organised by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, includes some of the most successful shows from international repertoire of puppetry such as the Toy Box Show from the USA, Arlecchino and the Witch from Italy, Traditional Puppet Show from Myanmar and Baj Pomorski Puppet Show from Poland. The various puppet shows are continuously held from 4 pm till 11 pm and are attracting a huge number of families and children.

The Toy Box Show from America involves interaction with children and is never devoid of surprises. With a montage of more than 20 puppets and marionettes, you never know what next will come out of the box. The production includes a tightrope walking bear, space aliens, a juggling Jack-in-the-Box and a sock monkey trapeze artist. This is a show for audiences of all ages.

Arlecchino and the Witch is a traditional Venetian puppet show depicting good and evil in a state of struggle.  The show takes place in a Venetian castle and showcases traditional costumes, rich colours and fancy lifestyle.  What distinguishes these offerings is ingenuity in the method used by artists connecting their ideas to children without having to speak.

The Myanmar puppet show boasts of dramatic plots and international stories appealing to all age groups. Displaying amazing skills, dexterity and control, which is reflected in the expressions on the faces of artists who control the puppets, theirs is an art that has to be seen to be believed. Indeed, puppetry from Myanmar is of a higher skill and class.  Only men manipulate the male puppets and only women play with female ones, reflecting the face of the expert puppeteer.

Baj Pomorski Puppet Show from Poland is a traditional interactive puppetry. It’s about an east European traditional fairytale of a creature living in the forest. This puppet troupe has been performing for over 60 years and engages children of all ages and adults.

Another area that has been attracting a great deal of attention of the visitors, especially the young ones, is the Ice Area.  An open platform for animation and comic shows, it is almost always crowded because of the delightful antics of Clown Jonny from Italy, the Juggling Comic and Toys Animation shows.  Then there’s the attraction of roaming animation of ice queen, stilts on ice and various other characters. Every performance is followed by ‘meet & greet’ session and photo ops with the audience.

Besides, there are a number of clowns and cartoon characters greeting the visitors Park visitors and constantly roaming around Mouj Island. Walking on impossibly high stilts and in distinctively bright costumes, where they meet and greet children, interact with them and take souvenir pictures with the visiting families. It’s fun all the way.  The sixth edition of Sharjah Water Festival will conclude on Friday, December 21st.