In 2004, a number of artists got together and founded the KHAYAL Cooperative Lebanese Association for Arts & Education as the extension and expansion of the Lebanese Puppet Theatre experience.

Due to difficult circumstances in Lebanon at the time, the Lebanese Puppet Theatre had found itself collaborating with local and international associations on artistic and theatrical projects with more social and educational applications.

In time, this initiative started making an impact on the community, both economically and socially. It soon became apparent that these new projects transcended the scope of the Lebanese Puppet Theatre, opening a wide window of opportunity for the artists and activists involved.

This is where KHAYAL came in to take charge of those new responsibilities and develop this field with the purpose of promoting the Arts for social, educational and developmental purposes in parallel with the association’s resolve to continue developing artistic research and creativity.

The name “KHAYAL” has a two-fold meaning in Arabic: “imagination” and “shadow”. This choice of name suited the association very well, both because it describes the association’s creative approach and because shadow theatre is one of the primary forms in the Arab traditional theatre.

The work of the Lebanese Puppet Theatre remains an integral part of KHAYAL’s activities, with a special emphasis on quality and creativity in its productions. The Lebanese Puppet Theatre is also the organizer of the Mediterranean Puppet Festival (now renamed Puppets in Caravan), an international festival held every 2 years

Mission Statement

KHAYAL seeks to reinforce the Arts as a universal means of expression and communication between individuals and societies.


To highlight the role of artists in order to transform it into a need and necessity through:

  • Improving the creative, technical, social and administrative skills of young artists
  • Encouraging communication and cultural networking among artists from different cultures and nationalities
  • Supporting and realizing artistic productions and events

To promote the Arts for the purposes of education, social development, awareness, advocacy, psychosocial animation, etc. through:

  • Creating and implementing projects in different fields through the Arts
  • Developing new methods and approaches of integrating arts in community actions