The sixth edition of the Ajyal Film Festival, the annual cinema event hosted by the Doha Film Institute from November 28 to December 3 at Katara Cultural Village, brings back the ‘Ajyal Stage’, this year with an assortment of family-friendly cinema, live music, spirited dancers, captivating puppet theatre and more.
Held over three days from Thursday, Nov. 29 to Saturday, Dec. 1, the Ajyal Stage comes to life at the Katara Esplanade that will also feature the ‘SONY Cinema Under the Stars.’ All the activities at Ajyal Stage are free and open to the public with limited seating available.
Fatma Hassan Alremaihi, Festival Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Doha Film Institute, said: “We are delighted to mark the return of Ajyal Stage this year, a lively hub for family-oriented activities that will entertain people of all ages. Ajyal Film Festival is ultimately about bringing together our community and offering them an exciting selection of cultural activities that will foster a spirit of unity. All the activities are open for the public and we are looking forward to meaningfully engaging the community with a mix of cinema, music and live performances by international artists.”
The fun-packed activities at Ajyal Stage will commence with the first SONY ‘Cinema Under the Stars’ open-air screening on Nov. 29, 6:30 PM, with the Qatar premiere of the ‘*My Family Tree*’ cine-concert programme by Tout-Petits Cinema, a Forum des Images production. It will present five short films that reveal what brings families together – the memory of happy moments, and all the members of the family tree that extends its branches through time. The series will be accompanied live by musicians Alexandre Korovitch, Romain Fleury, Paul Lepicard, Florian Schuegraf and Paul Manfrin, and will please film and music enthusiasts alike.
The five short films that are part of ‘My Family Tree’ program are: Sparrows Are Baby Pigeons (Russia/2015) by Nina Bisyrina, about a child who walks by a playful family of birds; Imago (France, Belgium/2005) by Cédric Babouche, about a young boy who remembers his father who was a pilot; Perché (France/2011) by Raphaël Huchon, that follows a father and his daughter walking in a field and plant a tiny sprout; Sunset Flower Blooming (Japan/2012) by Yuanyuan Hu, about an old woman remembering her youth in China; and My Grandfather Was a Cherry Tree(Russia/2015) by Olga Poliektova and Tatiana Poliektova, about a young boy who visits his grandparents and together look at family photographs.
On Friday, Nov. 30, at 6:30 PM, watch The Gallant Little Tailor (UK/1954), directed by Lotte Reiniger, which is an enchanting retelling of a Brothers Grimm classic about a clever little tailor who outwits too scary but silly giants.
At 6:40 PM on the same day, enjoy ‘*A Performance Desperately in Need of an Audience*’, a captivating live performance by the Arab Puppet Theatre Foundation. The silent show employs humor, magic, and satire to convey the all too serious issue of migration and exile to audiences. By playfully bending the rules of traditional puppet theatre, props and stage burst to life to tell this touching and affecting parable.
On Saturday, Dec. 1, at 7 PM, watch Journey to the Beginning of Time (Czechoslovakia/1955) directed by Karel Zeman, about a group of young boys who rent a boat at an inner-city park and enter a small cave at the edge of the lake. When they come out the other side, they find themselves in a new world.
Floating down the river each day, they travel progressively further back through history, encountering woolly mammoths, prehistoric rhinoceros, and dinosaurs.
2018 Ajyal Film Festival’s Official Partners include: Katara Cultural Village – Cultural Partner; Ooredoo – Principal Partner; Novo Cinemas – Strategic Partner and St. Regis Doha – Signature Sponsor.