Sponsored: Whet your appetite ahead of the Abu Dhabi Festival with a stunning performance by Joyce DiDonato.

Organisers of the annual Abu Dhabi Festival are hosting a pre-festival performance to whet your appetite of things to come. A two-time Grammy winner and globally renowned American mezzo-soprano opera singer, Joyce DiDonato makes her Arab world debut as she takes to the stage at the stunning Emirates Palace this Thursday January 24.

In a musical exploration of conflict and resolution, DiDonato will sing a collection of Baroque opera arias by Handel, Purcell, Jommelli and Monteverdi that explore war and peace.

Here’s a little snippet of what you can expect…

Joined by the Italian orchestra Il Pomo d’Oro, led by the Russian chief conductor Maxim Emelyanychev, the performance, titled In War & Peace: Harmony Through Music is DiDonato’s eloquent and moving plea for world peace in today’s turbulent and violent climate.

The repertoire was first produced as an album in 2016 and is divided into fiery military numbers as well as more calming and placid selections. However, the elements of both do intertwine. “As I have tried to convey in this selection of music, the power to bravely tip the scales towards peace lies firmly within every single one of us,” she explains. “Art is a valiant path to peace.”

The performance marks the first of the 16th annual Abu Dhabi Festival’s extensive cultural calendar of events for 2019, which covers opera, ballet, orchestra, jazz, dance and art. Tickets cost Dhs175. Go to 800tickets.com to book yours now.

The Abu Dhabi Festival is the largest celebration of arts and culture in the Arabian Gulf and this year it’s joining forces with the Special Olympics World Games, which is also taking place in March. After Joyce DiDonato’s pre-festival performances, residents and visitors can look forward to more than 100 events commissioned across of 20 venues including spectacular performances form the Korea’s national ballet and symphony orchestra.

January 24
Emirates Palace Auditorium. West Corniche. 8pm to 11pm, Dhs175. Tel: (02) 6909000. 800tickets.com