With less than ten days until it opens its doors to the world, Expo 2020 Dubai invites millions of visitors to join the making of a new world in a six-month celebration of human creativity, innovation, progress and culture.
Andrea Bocelli and Ellie Goulding to open Expo 2020 Dubai
An incredible roster of international, regional, and home-grown talent will perform at Expo 2020’s Opening Ceremony inside Al Wasl Plaza on 30 September. Among those slated to perform are world-famous tenor Andrea Bocelli; Grammy-nominated, Golden Globe-winning actress, singer and songwriter Andra Day; Platinum-selling British singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding; international mega-star pianist Lang Lang; and four-time Grammy winner Angelique Kidjo. The line-up also includes the ‘Artist of Arabs’ Mohamed Abdo, much-loved Emirati singing sensation ‘Fananat Al Arab’ Ahlam Alshamsi; Emirati Artist and Expo 2020 Dubai Ambassador Hussain Al Jassmi; rising UAE singer-songwriter Almas; and Grammy-nominated Lebanese-American singer Mayssa Karaa.
Expo 2020 launches its official song, ‘This Is Our Time’
Expo 2020 Dubai has launched its official song ‘This Is Our Time.’ The track highlights pride in the UAE’s culture, celebrates the future and brings together nations from around the world, while conveying the story of Expo’s overarching theme of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’ through the universal language of music. The song, available here, features Hussain Al Jassmi, one of the UAE’s biggest artists and Expo 2020 Ambassador, accompanied by Lebanese-American Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Mayssa Karaa, who is also Artistic Director of Expo’s all-female Firdaus Orchestra, as well as 21-year-old Emirati singer-songwriter Almas, named in Spotify’s Best Female Talent in the Middle East.
Expo introduces Rising Flavours Dining Hall
Showcasing some of the GCC’s leading celebrity chefs and most inspiring flavours, Expo 2020 Dubai is serving up a new culinary experience for visitors with the Rising Flavours Food Hall. The three-storey dining hall highlights the creativity of the Gulf region’s vibrant and ever-evolving food scene. It serves as a celebration of the incredible flavours and talent born or nurtured in the GCC. The cast includes celebrity chef Douha Abdullah Al Otaishan, Saudi Arabia’s first female executive chef; UAE-based pastry chef Carmen Rueda, known for her unique approach to creating pastries; Bahraini restaurateur Roaya Saleh; Omani celebrity chef Nader Al Aisari; Qatar-based Lebanese chef Mohamad Najem; Kuwait’s Khaled Al Baker; Hattem Mattar, the Arab world’s first pitmaster; Emirati Musabbeh Al Kaabi, a Dubai celebrity judge known for his modern approach to Emirati cuisine; Turkish chef Zulfikar Cambaz, chef de cuisine at BABA, Westin Mina Seyahi; and Jhon Faver, chef de cuisine at El Sur, the Spanish restaurant at Westin Mina Seyahi.
Water, earth and fire combine to make the Expo 2020 Water Feature
Experience giant sheets of water tumbling down 13-metre-high vertical walls that by day cascade into a mysterious, multi-hued circle of fire, and by night defy gravity by flowing upwards! Situated between Al Wasl Plaza and Jubilee Park, the Expo 2020 Water Feature combines the elements of water, earth and fire in a way that will both surprise and delight the senses. The 153 individual waves range from glistening sheets to bursts of water that leap from the walls as they make their dramatic descent to the plaza below. At night the waves reverse themselves – producing a gravity-defying spectacle as they flow up the walls. At the feature’s centre is a mysterious circle of fire that produces bursts of flames in red, green and yellow hues. Each surge of water is released on a musical cue, creating an orchestral masterpiece performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. The original score was written by the award-winning composer Ramin Djawadi, whose work includes the theme music for the HBO series Game of Thrones.
Visit Expo 2020’s ‘Garden In The Sky’ for the ultimate view of the Expo 2020 site
Soaring 55 metres above the ground, Garden in the Sky is an observation tower and “flying park”, offering 360-degree views of the wonder-filled Expo 2020 Dubai site. Located in Jubilee Park, the tower’s upper floor is planted with ten Peltophorum Inerme trees linked by stairs to the air-conditioned lower floor. Visitors to this attraction, the only one of its kind in the world, will enter the lower cabin in the basement and the upper cabin on the ground floor. The interlinked cabins rotate as they ascend and descend.
Zoetrope-inspired ‘Equinox’ sculpture is revealed at Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion
Equinox, an animated sculpture by British artist Mat Collishaw, was unveiled at Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion. The sculpture is a stunning showcase for 3D artwork that harnesses zoetrope technology to create a captivating optical illusion. The centrepiece is a giant lotus flower featuring an orbit of insects, spinning on its vertical axis. Its petals act as ‘shutters’ – animating the insects within as they appear to fly, eat and pollinate in perfect harmony. The petals of the flower function as a sacred chalice conserving insect ecology, with their enhanced scale underscoring the cataclysm that would follow their decline. Mat Collishaw said: “My work engages with subject matter that involves an engagement with how we as humans navigate the world and the choices we make. The sustainability theme of Terra provided a context, literally and metaphorically, for an experience that invites contemplation and reflection on the precarious nature of the earth’s ecosystem.
Expo 2020 Dubai Passport revealed
Dubai residents and international visitors can ‘travel’ around the world at Expo 2020 Dubai, celebrating their global journey with a special passport as they explore the 200-plus participating pavilions. The passport will encourage visitors to see as many pavilions as possible during the 182-day event. Shaped like an official passport, the 50-page booklet contains designs and pictures of the three Thematic Pavilions, Al Wasl Plaza, Dubai landmarks, and other elements relating to the UAE. Priced at AED 20, the Expo 2020 Dubai passport is available for purchase from all official Expo 2020 Dubai stores located across the Expo site, the Expo 2020 Dubai store located in Dubai Airports’ Terminal 3 and expo2020dubai.com/onlinestore
Expo 2020 Dubai has unveiled its Sports, Fitness and Wellbeing Hub
Harnessing the unique power of sport to bring together people, Expo 2020 Dubai will offer a sporting programme featuring an array of free activities, exhibition matches, big-name sporting stars and an entire zone dedicated to fitness and wellness. Expo 2020’s Sports, Fitness and Wellbeing Hub is a 5,400 SQM space complete with a multi-sports area for basketball, volleyball, tennis and netball; a five-a-side football pitch; ‘Big Bash’ cricket nets, an indoor fitness studio; a fitness stage; large LED screens; and a space for sports exhibitions, showcases and celebrity signings. The Hub is the pulsating heart of Expo’s sporting programme – but activities don’t end there. Events, competitions and all manner of athletic and wellness pursuits will take place across Expo 2020, and visitors will enjoy all activities for free as part of their entry ticket.