Katara Plaza. 2017 — Playwriting and scenography

Project for a show at the official opening of the Katara Plaza shopping mall in Doha, Qatar.

Institutional sponsor: Ali Bin Ali

Location: Doha, Qatar.

© Rendering: Ignasi Cristià SL

Katara Plaza is a shopping mall built on the outskirts of Doha, the capital of Qatar. This is our proposal submitted to the contest sponsored by Acciona for its opening ceremony. The organisers wanted a show for an audience of around 250 people, as well as a parade that would run down the main avenue of the complex and could be repeated frequently in order to enliven the mall area.

Our proposal consisted in combining these two parts into a single show whose thematic core was cultural exchanges between East and West. It is an opera featuring a male figure and a female figure which would be staged in the main square. This site posed some difficulties, given that there are two car park exits in the centre. In an effort to turn this problem into an advantage, we divided the stage into two, placing the Arab musical instruments on the right and the grand piano on the left as a symbol of the West. Surrounding the entire square were curved screens that extended 180 degrees and projected animated backgrounds and images. The plot is a passionate love story between the two main characters. To conquer the woman, the man has to summon all the beauty and wisdom of ancient cultures. To do so, he is transformed into a golden falcon (a local icon) and undertakes a journey through time and space, visiting cultures that are symbolised by their mythological animals: the winged bull of Babylon, the golden dragon of China, the jaguar of America, the sphynx of Egypt… Music and dance performances happen throughout the different acts. Finally, the falcon returns after passing the test and conquers his beloved. At that point, the screen on which the images were projected turns transparent and the shopping mall is illuminated, while the mythological animals, which are actually articulated puppets, embark on a grand parade along the avenue.

Katara Plaza website