Who is the Women's Guild in Oman?
In late 2019 we were commissioned to work on an exciting new show in the Middle East.
Our client, The Women’s Guild in Oman, works to promote friendships among women of all nationalities and creeds, exchanging useful information and sharing local knowledge about living in Oman. Their aim is to bring together women from a variety of backgrounds as a fellowship and to raise money for charity.
Stage One: The BRIEF
Our brief was to create an exciting, action packed show in the theme of The Greatest Showman. The event was to be aptly dubbed “The Greatest ShOman”.
Each year The Women’s Guild in Oman hosts a huge celebration called The Crystal Ball – one of the largest annual charity balls held in Muscat, which attracts hundreds of guests from far and wide every year, so of course expectations were high and “The Greatest ShOman” had to deliver.
STAGE TWO: Props and Decoration
The venue, Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel, was a fantastic space to work with. This 5-star luxury resort is set against the Al Hajar mountains overlooking the Sea of Oman which provided a fantastic backdrop to the event’s show.
The stage show was to be performed outside so aerial rigging had to be constructed over the temporary dance floor. This was decorated with lights extending from the centre to create the illusion of performing inside a big top circus tent, further exaggerated by a circus ring in the middle of the performance area.
The dance floor-come-circus-ring was bordered by colourful circus podiums painted in stripes and zig-zag patterns. Hundreds of large clear orbs hanging from the sky flanked by a single row of palm trees were used to reflect the The Women’s Guild in Oman’s long standing event name ‘The Crystal Ball’ and really helped transform the venue into something truly magical.
Stage Three: Costumes and Performers
We began by selecting the line up of performers and quickly came to the decision that an aerialist performing an elegant solo aerial silks routine would be the main highlight of the evening. Along with the aerial silks performer, we also decided on multiple fire performers, a contortionist, a stilt walking trio, and a juggler. Singers and a full backing band were also brought in to provide the live music late into the night, whilst guests had the opportunity to explore the venue’s private beach.
The costume requirements were relatively challenging for our creative department, as although the event was aimed primarily at expats, some local guests would also be attending. As a result we had to be considerate of local traditions and values so as not to offend.
In terms of performance requirements The Women’s Guild in Oman had suggested they intended to provide a three course meal, so our stage show would be split into four parts – providing entertainment before each course and finishing with a group grand finale at the end.
STAGE four: Bring in the Guests!
On the day of the event the venue slowly transformed into a circus – the rigging was erected, lights we set, PA system was tested, dance floor constructed, props were put in place, and hundreds of ‘crystal balls’ were hung. The aerial silks were rigged, the band set up their equipment and the venue looked fantastic.
As the sun started to set over the Al Hajar mountains and the guests began to arrive, the energy was electric. On the client’s request the performers began their walkabout / meet and greet sets – interacting with guests whilst stilt walking and performing ambient juggling and fire shows under the moon light.
The stage shows were a huge success generating lots of positive feedback and creating a visually engaging atmosphere along with a unique photo opportunity.
“Everything from beginning to end was excellent. All the performers were fantastic and professional and a pleasure to work with. Our event was a huge success and a big part of that was down to Oddle. I would highly recommend them.”
– GABRIELLA SOTGIU
Women’s Guild in Oman, President
This was not our first time providing entertainment in the Middle East and we hope it will not be our last. It was an amazing adventure and it was an honour and a pleasure to be involved in such a fantastic company, The Women’s Guild in Oman, who ran a brilliant event held for a worthy cause.