Pokemon Live, the stage version based on the hottest children's character, is being enjoyed by thousands of people at Mamzar Park, including overseas visitors and their families, every night since the start of Dubai Shopping Festival 2001.

The spectacular musical, featuring characters that have been made famous in cartoon series and movies, has been transported to the stage for the first time, with amazing effect, bringing the two-dimensional characters into a 3-D world.

Watching the daily two shows of Pokemon Live at Mamzar Park are not only excited kids but also parents who probably have never heard names like Pikachu and Team Rocket. "We stopped for a week in Dubai to enjoy the Dubai Shopping Festival, and our son Sean insisted that he wanted to see the Pokemon show," said South African couple, Roger and Martha Goldsmith. "Frankly, we had not heard of Pokemon at all, until we saw this musical and now we know the names of most of the characters."

Mohammed Hassan Mubarak, seen enjoying the show with his two children Ahmed (five) and Hassan (eight) said: "I don't known anything about Pokemon, but after seeing the show I think I know why Pokemon has become such a craze around the world."

His son Hassan said: "I had seen Pokemon on TV, but it was a different experience seeing Pikachu, Ash, Team Rocket and the gang on stage. I just wanted to cuddle Pikachu and shoot Giovanni."

Nine-year-old Monisha, who is visiting Dubai for the first time, said: "I think the stage Pokemon is better than the TV Pokemon. I wish I can take a photograph with all the Pokemons on stage."

Pokemon Live brings alive the Pokemon story with beautifully choreographed songs, suspenseful drama and amazing special effects. Pikachu, the cuddly little Pokemon, his trainer Ash, friends Misty and Brock, the bad guys gang of Team Rocket, and of course the villain Giovanni, are all there in this musical extravaganza filled with hummable songs.

The song-and-dance spectacular tells the story of how Pikachu is kidnapped by Giovanni, who has devised a sort of super-robot Pokemon who can instantly assimilate an opponent's power, thus enabling its creator to rule the world.

The action takes place against a giant backdrop showing audiovisual scenes from the Pokemon series, while down below on stage the exciting drama and wonderful choreography keep the audience spell bound. Pikachu's cute dances wow the young and old alike. One of the cutest sights is to see the Pokemon dance, which features some 20-odd little Pokemons performing a lively dance with their trainers.

Pikachu's power to emit fire is shown through amazing special effects. Pikachu can 'thunder-attack' an opponent, but it is no match to the 'hyper beam' of Mega-Meowth2, the monster Pokemon created by Giovanni.