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21 February 2024

Dubai Diary: What to do, where to go this weekend?

By Bindu Suresh Rai

When it rains, it pours, as the adage goes. And if you are a fan of live theatre, then this weekend has not one, not two but three shows that will leave you spoiled for choice when planning an evening out.
Kicking off the acts is a stage adaptation of a beloved British comedy that has also been voted as one of top TV shows on the Beeb, with “Ello Ello” coming to town to serve up a few laughs this Dubai Shopping Festival season.
Also on the agenda is a Hindi/Urdu play that has been directed by the award-winning Indian actor, Naseerudin Shah, whose performances leave audiences mesmerised.
Rounding up the trio is Indian stage veteran Nadira Babbar’s social comedy, “Yaar Bana Buddy”, which narrates the story of three friends and how they hold on to their bond when one goes astray.
To know more, read on:
Thursday, January 19
Jazz Cup: Pakistan vs England

It’s cricket season in the UAE and after last weekend’s Celebrity Cricket League matches that saw a volley of Bollywood stars jet into town, including Salman Khan and Kangana Ranaut, this time around we have real sporting greats showing us how its done at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Sports City.
The five-day test match between Asian juggernaut, Pakistan and the super talented England has already kicked off, with the matches being played out until January 21 under the Jazz Cup banner.
Tickets have already sold out online in most places, so get them fast before you walk away disappointed. The prices start as low as Dh20 for the Green Zone and go all the way to Dh700 for the Corporate Hospitality seating. Children under two years go free.
Doors open 9am, match starts 10am everyday. Call: 04 425 1111
Ello Ello: The Dinner Show
If you are looking for rib-tickling action this DSF, you can have plenty of it at the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel in Dubai Green Community.
Running until January 21st, the acclaimed British comedy, “Ello Ello”, along with a dinner theatre experience, will entertain like never before.
Organised by Dolphin Creative, the Dubai show is based on the beloved BBC TV series “Allo Allo” around the wartime antics of café owner Renaux Coupe and his wife Eadie.
At this slapstick dinner show, the duo attempts to foil the dastardly Herr Flugentofter of the Gestapo, shelter two prisoners of war who have escaped and hide a priceless masterpiece.
Don’t be surprised if mixed into the performances are parodies of classic films such as “Casablanca” and “Dad’s Army”.
Written and Directed by Mark Brailsford, “Ello Ello – The Dinner Show” has a cast of veteran performers, inlcuding David Mounfield playing Renaux while Jenny Rowe, an actor, an improviser and singer takes the role of Eadie.
Brailsford himself takes on the part of Herr Flugentofter of the Gestapo.
The show will be held at 7.30pm on the said days, along with an added 1pm show on January 21st.
Tickets are priced at Dh395, inclusive of a three-course meal and a complimentary cocktail. Call: 055 785 0149
Yaar Bana Buddy: Hindi Play
The super talented Indian theatre personality, Nadira Zaheer Babbar, writes and directs this Hindi language comedy about three friends and how their relationship takes a sudden turn in life when one of the trio starts to forget his roots.
This social play sees the other two mates planning a series of tricks and treats to bring the errant friend back in line and remember what brought them together as a band of merry men in the first place.
After touring India extensively, the show comes to Dubai courtesy Rangmanch, with cast members Sajjad Khan, Yashpal Sharma and Rajesh Balwani.
This one-night event is being held at the Sheikh Rashid Auditorium, Indian High School from 8.30pm.
Tickets start at Dh50 and go up to Dh300. Call: 04 331 6488
Friday, January 20
Ismat Apa Ke Naam: Hindi/Urdu Play

Award-winning Indian actor, Naseeruddin Shah is expected to set the stage on fire with a stellar performance that will see him perform alongside his wife and talented actor, Ratna Pathak Shah, and daughter Heeba Shah.
A Dubai Shopping Festival event, “Ismat Apa Ke Naam” is directed by Naseeruddin Shah in a series of three short stories by the famous Urdu writer Ismat Khanum Chughtai; the acts are titled, “Mughal Bacche“, “Chhui Muee” and “Gharwali”, all narrated with élan and gusto by the trio.
The beauty of the entire experience lies not just in the manner in which the stories are narrated by the actors but by the sheer luminosity, irony and poignancy of the stories themselves.
The play has already received rave reviews from across the globe, so make sure you do not miss it.
Organised by ADSS Marketing and Communications, tickets for the show are priced at Dh150, Dh250, Dh350 and Dh500. The show runs at the Dubai Community Theatre and Arts Centre (DUCTAC), Mall of the Emirates, from 7pm until 9pm. Call: 04 369 2128
Rhythm Of Your Heart Concert
Persian delights are in store this weekend as Radio Shoma 93.4, the latest radio station targeting the Farsi community across the UAE, presents the Rhythm of your Heart Concert.
Performing live will be popular Persian artists Arash, Afshin, Sepideh and Mehrshad.
The show is being held at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre for fans of all ages.
Doors open 6pm, show starts 9pm. Tickets are priced at  Dh200 (Dh300 at the door) and Dh500, which allows access to a premium bar and closer proximity to the stage.
Organised by Done Events, for details call: 04 439 0900