Dubai: Bollywood stars Shah Rukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit congratulated the city of Dubai on Saturday for winning the bid to host the World Expo 2020. The stars were speaking at a press conference ahead of their Access All Areas concert at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Sunday.
“It’s a marvellously big thing and it’s also UAE’s National Day. Come and celebrate with us,” said Khan at a packed press conference.
Actress Dixit, who heard about the Expo 2020 bid while on a flight to the city, said she would never forget the loud cheers that erupted when the announcement was made.
“Dubai is going through a great phase in its life. I was looking at the skyline and the city looks so futuristic. It looks like a sci-fi movie set with cars flying around. It’s so advanced, I can’t wait to see what Dubai is going to be in 2020,” she said.
The stars were joined by singer Yo Yo Honey Singh on stage, dressed in a kandoura.
Access All Areas is a star-studded global concert tour featuring songs and performances from many of Khan’s blockbusters. He will be joined on stage by Dixit, whom he’s starred with in many films, Singh and actresses Deepika Padukone and Jaqueline Fernandes.
Khan, who announced the concert while filming his upcoming comedy Happy New Year in the city in September, said Dubai has always been kind to him.
“We never get a better audience than in Dubai. So please keep coming in big numbers,” he said. He also said the idea for Lungi Dance, the hit song from his recent blockbuster Chennai Express, was born in Dubai.
“You are going to see a face-off between Shah Rukh and me,” Dixit also teased.
The aim of the concert, Khan said, was to spread happiness.
“I am not a pop star or a rockstar. But through live performances you can get in touch with all those who made me who I am today,” said Khan, who said he always says a little prayer before hitting the stage.
“I am very spiritual about acting and live performances. Even before dancing in a lungi [sarong predominantly worn by men in south India], I take 15 seconds to be one with God and the people who will watch me. I pray that God gives me strength to make the show successful. The rest of the stuff that happens backstage, I can’t tell you,” he added with a smile.
Always the charmer, the actor’s self-deprecating humour went down well with those present.
“Acting is all about the nudification of your soul,” he joked. “I am 48 and I dance around trees. How many people do you know who do that?”
He promised an unforgettable night at the concert. “Be there tomorrow and we will spread as much happiness as we can,” he said.