50 000

November 30th, 2021

Live and multimedia show

Project development: 8 months

More info


While the pandemic meant that travel and social contact were heavily restricted and filling a stadium to capacity was not something that could be taken for granted, the ambition to produce a grand and different opening ceremony remained strong.

In April 2021 we were contacted by Agence Publics Qatar and Katara Studios to form a working group whose goal would be to produce a ceremony that was out of the ordinary in terms of both form and content. This ceremony took place one year to the day before the 2022 World Cup.

Different in content: forphor Joha, the wise fool, a folklore hero of the oral tradition, accompanied by his faithful companion, the Donkey, meets two deepfakes – famous actors from the 1970s. Their adventures lead the audience to ponder the need to better live together, to accept each other and to be nourished by our differences, which, all too often, can be a source of conflict in the region.

The appearance of the celebrated singer Fairuz, also rejuvenated in the form of a deepfake, concludes this musical and quasi-theatrical epic that is at odds with the classic format of sports ceremonies.

To end the ceremony with the same wish for unity, the national anthems of the 23 countries are reinterpreted in an original composition that is all about emotion.

Different in form: the format of the ceremony was one of a kind in the realm of integrated sports ceremonies, comprising 32 minutes of entertainment between the end of the players’ warm-up and kick-off.

The ceremony made clever use of cutting-edge technology and content – deepfakes, TikTok, etc – that serve to update codes in order to connect with the younger generations.

With this ceremony that paves the way for the 2022 World Cup, Qatar has ramped up expectations to new heights.


Fédération Internationale de Football Association



Katara Studio

Executive Producer, soundtrack and deep-fake characters

Ahmed Albaker, CEO and director

Hussein Fakhri, Executive producer

Mahmoud Hamaky, Producer

Maryam Al-Sahli, Film editor and postproduction supervisor


Agence Publics Qatar

Producer – Operations

Saif Albazirgan, CEO and project director

Jonathan Davis, Project manager

Valerie Ansems-Chalouhi, Operations manager

Aziz Louksah, Workforce Director

Sanil Chandran, HSSE director

Germana Cruz, Logistics director

Ali Nahle, Broadcast manager

Dimitris Gialginas, Technical coordinator

Joe Kharrat, Site Manager

Sarita Brid Montoya, Accreditation manager

Fabella Bel, Travel logistics manager

Khaoula Maddur, Catering manager

Sheefer Salim, Transportation manager


Les Petits Français

Show design, technical design, direction, artistic and content production

Martin Arnaud, Show designer and director  

Marilyn Kuentz, Artistic and content producer

Guillaume Duflot, Senior production manager

Alain Gaillard, Technical director

Anne Larra, Live producer

Jean-Luc Favre, First assistant

Thaïs de Nanteuil, Logistics and production coordinator



Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra

Ismail Zafer Haznedaroglu



Les Vandales



Yoan Corchia, Engineer


Light design and programming

Bruno Corsini

Thiebaud Richard

Jérôme Deschamps


Mass choreography

Laura Guglielmetto

Cyril Journet

Giselle Motta

Emin Süleymanov

Antonio Barone


Casting and dancers

Enana Group


Roger Titley’s Creatures

Puppet: the donkey



James Thomson

Jungju Kim

Anahid Gholami Saba



Costume design

Caroline Denquin

Integral Qatar


Master of ceremony

Georges Elias Chalouhi


Show Caller

Laurence Pélissier


Stage managers

Eric Solari

Stéphane Lizouret

Alexandre Leclanche

David Gervier


Canvas manager

Francesco Lombardi

Mattia Pasquali


Design and pyrotechnics productions

Grand Final Fireworks


Projection design and media servers



Video projection

Creative Technology


Light and rigging



Network and show control