The Happiest Job on Earth

Dawn B

5 months ago

Meet the Entertainment Director of Yas Island’s two major theme parks

They say that smiles are contagious and no one knows this better than Australian Deana Taylor. As Entertainment Director for Farah Experiences, Deana leads a team of fun, talented multi-cultural – and multi-talented team – of dancers, performers and characters at both Yas Waterworld and Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. We asked Deana about her road to Yas Island, what her role entails, what the best part of her job is and what she loves most about Yas Island.

  1. How did you come to work on Yas Island?

    I’ve been working on Yas Island since May 2015. I have worked in theme parks for 25 years so I’m a theme park girl through and though. I started out in the industry at Warner Brothers Movie World on the Gold Coast in Australia.I was Tweety Bird and I actually ended up marrying Bugs Bunny!Just prior to working on Yas Island, I received a call from someone who already worked at Farah Experiences who thought that I would be a good fit. I started out as Entertainment Manager at Yas Waterworld and within 6 months I was given the fantastic opportunity to look after the Entertainment teams of both properties.

  2. What does your job entail?  

    I look after the daily operations of our department in both parks which includes anything from events, birthday parties, shows at both parks, recruitment and looking after a staff of approximately 70 entertainers. I am privileged to mentor a team of characters, the Yas Waterworld divers who perform in the Pearl Diving Experience, all dancers and circus performers as well as the atmosphere performers that appear throughout each park. It is never dull in the Entertainment Department!

  3. What’s the best part about your job?  

    The best part of my job is that I get to have fun every single day. I love the flexibility and excitement of the department and that there is always something new and fun happening. We’re the department that assists in creating life long memories for the people who visit Yas Island, which is pretty cool. Working with a team from 24 nationalities is also very exciting and beyond our work here on the Island, we also have the opportunity to represent Yas Island and the parks off the island, encouraging people to visit.

  4. What’s your favorite memory of working on Yas Island so far?  

    My favorite memory so far was being part of giving away 1 million dirhams as the last prize of Yas Island’s Say Yas campaign this past summer. We had invited the winner to Yas Waterworld and actually had one of our talented divers let the winner know that they had won one million dirhams through unveiling the 1-million-dirham cheque, underwater in the Pearl Diving tank. The planning and practice was so exciting and the entire team was thrilled to be part of it this great surprise. When we revealed it to the winner, everyone was in tears!

  5. What would surprise people about your job?  

    I think that at a Director level it may surprise people that I will jump in to do what is needed to ensure that our shows and entertainment are a success for our guests. I’m grateful that I started my career as an animator so that I have a taste of what the operations on the floor is really like and with this in mind, I’m happy and willing to jump in where needed!

  6. What’s your favorite thing to do on Yas Island when you’re not working?  

    My favorite thing to do on Yas Island when I’m not working, would be to go to Yas Marina with my family. It’s a great place to have a bite to eat and my husband enjoys looking at the boats. My kids also love the Yas KartZone at Yas Marina Circuit. Yas Island is a great place and we’re very lucky to be in this part of the world.

 


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