The clowns' visit was a much needed break to the children.(The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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Squawking and hollering, a motley group of more than 100 Syrian kids point excitedly at the clown playing dead on the floor before them.There isn't normally a whole lot of joy in being a child refugee in Lebanon, but for Clowns Without Borders, there is always room for more laughter.This Monday, funded by Kuwaiti humanitarian organization Layan, they began a fortnight-long tour of refugee communities in Lebanon, which is currently hosting well over 1 million Syrians fleeing the brutal civil war next door.Gaxiola is joined on stage by three others, none of whom she has worked with before: Chilean Claudio Martinez, who plays the comically sad clown to perfection; American David Clay, a grumpy, bossy type; and zany, attention-seeking Lebanese Sabine Choucair, who also runs her own clowning company here called Clown Me In.Basma wa Zaytouna, which was set up five months ago specifically for Syrian refugee kids living in the impoverished camp, even held a special class on clowns, or muharrajeen, in preparation for the event.For Hanadi Woeis, who teaches English to the 300 kids at the school, the clowns' visit provides a much-needed break from the usual routine.
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