Doha: Cultural Village Foundation (Katara) contributed to the creation of an unprecedented theatrical movement starting from the beginning of 2022 and after the wave of COVID-19 declined, where the Katara Cultural Index showed for the first half of 2021.
According to the index, Katara's theater performances received a large public turnout, estimated at 18,428 visitors. The capacity of the drama theater is estimated at 430 people, and due to the audience's thirst for this art, Katara organized two performances per day for many theatrical works.
Director of Cultural Affairs and Events at Katara Khalid Abdul Rahim Al Sayed attributed this theatrical movement to the cooperation with strategic partners, including the Theater Affairs Center at the Ministry of Culture, in addition to the fact that Katara hosted the 34th Doha Theater Festival, organized by the Ministry of Culture from March 16 to 27, 2022, and witnessed many events all held at Katara, including five university plays, three plays for civil troupes, three official seminars, eight practical seminars, and a special theatrical show produced by the Theater Affairs Center under the name "Star Theater".
The festival included the celebration of World Theater Day, which falls on March 27 of each year and was held at the Katara Opera House.
Al Sayed pointed out that Katara continued its interest in children's theater, where it held several artistic workshops within the summer programs, including a workshop to teach the art of puppetry, including hand and thread puppets, in addition to teaching motor expression, speech, and facial expressions, for children aged 8 to 13 years, and Katara also staged 4 plays, within the Eid Al-Adha events, the first entitled "Friends of Nature," the second tells about forest animals, the third silent play, and the fourth related to the shadow fantasy theater, including a parade of giant dolls.
The Director of Cultural Affairs and Events at Katara stressed that the theatrical movement will continue without interruption, as it is planned to hold many theatrical events during the coming months of November and December, to continue until the beginning of the next year 2023, including international plays, in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture and the Tourism Authority, as well as the theatrical movement will include partnerships with Gulf and Arab countries.
Relevantly, the artist and theater director Saad Burshaid explained that the Katara Cultural Village has become a source of radiation at the cultural, artistic, and intellectual levels, highlighting talented people in all aspects of creativity, and the theater had a share of this radiation, as local theater groups took advantage of the opportunities provided by Katara to meet with the audience, indicating that the matter was not limited to the Qatari theater, but Katara theaters were opened to theater groups from outside Qatar.
He reiterated that the partnership with the Theater Affairs Center at the Ministry of Culture reflected positively on the art of theater and restored its old glow, and allowed theatergoers and those interested in this art to meet through seminars and lectures to discuss their hopes to continue the theatrical movement, and also arranged the holding of many festivals, including the Doha Theater Festival and the university theater, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Qatari Theatrical Troupe, and honoring theater pioneers over the years.
Dr. Hassan Rashid, a theater critic, expressed that Katara played a major role in restoring the theater to the front after a period of stagnation that organized the Qatari and Arab theater alike, stressing that the Cultural Village succeeded in providing diverse theatrical creativity, for adults and children, and also hosted theatrical performances from outside the country.