International masters of puppetry have brought their skills to Dubai for the first time, during the World of Puppets event, held as part of Dubai Summer Surprises this year.
Talent from the US, Italy, Myanmar, Austria, Poland and Egypt will be performing until Saturday at Mirdif City Centre in Dubai, in a family event organised by Majid Al Futtaim Properties and Dubai Events and Promotions Establishment.
The festival will include stage productions and roaming performances. An exhibition and special interactive puppet-making workshops for children are also featured.
The extravagant sets of the Marionette Theatre from Vienna, Austria, will transport visitors to a forest-like dream world, filled with fairies, peacocks, unicorns and butterflies, while the famous Baj Pomorski theatre from Poland will take both young and old to the world of fairy tales and legends.
Fuad Mansoor Sharaf, of Majid Al Futtaim Properties, says: "The Festival features some of the world's most talented puppeteers from theatres across the globe.
"Puppetry is a highly imaginative art form. Holding a puppet in one's hand, or controlling a marionette's strings, empowers a child to bring the puppet to life through role-playing and storytelling."
The Paolo Papparotto Theatre from Italy will recapture the ancient Veneto puppetry tradition through its famous Arlecchino and Pantalone characters, while the internationally renowned HTWE OO Theatre from Myanmar will showcase its puppet tradition that dates back centuries.
Audiences will be drawn into this imaginary world, says Sharaf, and therefore will look beyond the boundaries of the physical stage. He also believes that the global representation of the featured puppeteers reflect the "multicultural diversity of tourists and residents in the UAE".
Daily until Saturday, 2pm to 10pm, in the Central Galleria at Mirdif City Centre. Entry is free
Get up to something: We round up some of the remaining DSS events and live shows
Hamley's Summer Island
Step inside one of the world's most famous and magical toy shops, where children can take part in various activities and competitions - and, if they dress up in tropical costumes, they'll get a chance to take part in a fashion show.
Thursday to Saturday, 4pm to 9pm, the Dubai Mall.
The Black and White Circus
This special DSS performance by talented artists is organised by the Dubai Shopping Malls Group.
Friday and Saturday, 6.30pm, the central atrium, Oasis Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road.
Charlie and Lola
Based on the characters created by Lauren Childs and adapted by Johnathan Lloyd, the animated and humorous series follows the two siblings as they encounter everyday issues.
Daily until Saturday, 4.30pm, 6.30pm and 8pm, the main stage, Mercato Mall.
At the Dubai World Trade Centre, kids are invited to interact, dance and sing with the world-famous children's TV characters - four aliens from Teletubbyland.
Daily from Saturday to Wednesday at 5pm, 7pm and 8pm, and on Thursday at 5pm, 7pm, 8pm and 9pm, Dubai World Trade Centre. Free, but entry to Modhesh World costs Dh10.
Hello Kitty Karaoke Show
This 25-minute live show invites the audience to join Hello Kitty and her friends on a journey of song and dance.
Saturday to Wednesday, 4.30pm, 6pm and 7.30pm, Thursday to Friday, 4.30, 6pm, 7.30pm and 9pm, free, Festival Centre, Dubai Festival City.
Watch the characters from the popular animated movie Finding Nemo come alive during this adventure stage show.
Thursday to Saturday, 6.30pm, 7.30pm and 9pm, free,Al Ghurair Shopping Centre.