Amna Abulhoul
Amna Abulhoul, Expo 2020 Dubai Executive Creative Director, announces on Wednesday the exciting line up of of events to be held at the Expo-2020 Dubai as part of the UAE's Golden Jubilee National Day celebrations. Image Credit: Angel Tesorero

Dubai: Expect not only daily but hourly surprises at Expo 2020 Dubai as the world’s greatest show celebrates the UAE’s Golden Jubilee from December 1-4, Amna Abulhoul, Expo 2020 Dubai Executive Creative Director, announced during a press briefing on Wednesday.

“Every corner (at the Expo) has a surprise and every show is a must see. From morning till night — this will be one of the best festive weekends anyone can enjoy with their friends and family,” Abulhoul added.

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There will be a massive international and national production of 150 performers representing the seven emirates, and augmented from performers from 95 countries. Songs and traditional dances showcasing UAE’s national heritage — from the songs of the seas, to the hymns of the mountains and modern performances — will welcome the visitors and entertain them at various venues spread across the Expo.

Fancy fireworks display will also light up the skies above the Expo nightly while marching bands, children’s parade will keep the momentum upbeat on the ground.

Emotional surprises

Abulhoul said there will be surprises not only every day but every hour during the Golden Jubilee weekend celebrations at the Expo. “Our festive weekend starts at 9am and goes on till 2am. The UAE reaches 50 years and we want to make sure that from the time the gates open to the time they close, everyone will be enjoying ‘emotional’ days,” she added.

The weekend celebration will kick-off on December 1, with storytellers from the UAE taking centre stage. The commemoration will be filled with nostalgia as the UAE goes backs to its roots and narrate the beginning of the nation. The celebration will also highlight UAE’s visionary leaders and pioneers – from composers of the national anthem to innovative and ground-breaking Emiratis in various fields.

Nabati poetry

The main show for the UAE National Day will be on December 2. The day will start with a flag-raising ceremony and singing of the national anthem, followed by an 'Al Azi' performance, a form of Nabati poetry – which is part of the UAE’s cultural heritage – that symbolises victory.

Al Azi takes its origins as a celebration of victory on the battlefield, passed on for generations. The poem written in 10 lines will be performed by 50 men from different tribes of the seven emirates, noted Abulhoul.

Two shows will be taking place in the evening (7.30pm and 10.15pm) of December 2 at the iconic Al Wasl Dome. Abulhoul said the show titled ‘Journey of the 50’, which portrays a young boy and his grandmother, “is an extension of the impressive opening ceremony”.

Visitors should also look at the night sky during the four-day celebration as fireworks will dazzle their eyes.

Coming together

More than entertainment, Abulhoul added the 50th UAE National Day celebration is a celebration of “the world coming together”.

“This is the first time that the country is celebrating its big day with the world. It’s really exciting to see the fusion performances and how they are integrated with us as one. This Golden Jubilee weekend is not only a celebration of the UAE turning 50 but the world turning into one.”

2021 and beyond

Abulhoul noted local and international artists will pay homage to the people of this land. She added: “We will bring nostalgia with modernity and create a celebration from around the world. We may speak different languages but we portray the same emotions. This is a unique celebration of happiness, pride, and love. In the last 50 years, we connected with the world. Now, we are looking forward to UAE’s next 50 years – to 2071 and beyond.”