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Start the season on a merry note with ‘The Night Before Christmas,’ a play running on December 7 and 8 at the Madinat Theatre. Perfect for children three plus, the show is “an inclusive story about the relationship between humans, animals and robots and that friendship, kindness and putting others first, is more important than any gift or wrapped up present,” says Katy Helps, who plays the lead, Emily.

The narrative follows a mouse called Eddie, who, camping out in Emily’s room on Christmas Eve, finds himself wondering: Why do only humans get presents? He sets out determined to meet Father Christmas and get an answer.

The result is a meandering adventure set to music and dance, which comes with moments of great learning.“There are lots of important messages in the story, but one that really resonates with me is that you should believe in yourself, and that you can do anything if you put your mind to it,” explains Helps.

“It’s important to think about other people, in all corners of the world, not just friends and family at Christmas. And if you simply tell yourself that you can do something, then that mentality will make a huge difference to your outlook on all aspects of life.”

That’s not to say the journey is lacking in fun. There are mischievous run-ins with the family cat, toy soldier and magical fairy and very, very hummable tunes. “The music is brilliant and the songs are so catchy that they will be stuck in your head for days!” says Helps.

“For me, the most challenging part [of a show] is the rehearsal period, piecing all the elements of the story together, once the show is up and running I love every second,” she says of the process of putting a story together for the world. And when in doubt, she takes her cue from her favourite dialogue in the story: “Yes you can!”

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Don’t miss it!

Tickets to ‘The Night Before Christmas,’ which runs on December 7 and 8 at the Madinat Theatre, are Dh55 (plus VAT). There are multiple shows.