AR Rahman’s Firdaus Orchestra will be performing at Expo 2020 Dubai this month

These musicians will strike a chord with your soul…

Expo 2020 Dubai has it all from must-visit pavilions to a waterfall and observation deck, restaurants, robots and much more. On the entertainment front, there’s so much to see and sometimes multiple shows take place simultaneously.

One performance you don’t want to miss is Firdaus Orchestra – an all-women ensemble formed by Oscar-winning composer AR Rahman. The inaugural event will take place at 7pm on October 23 at the Jubilee Stage.

Expo 2020 Dubai has released an exclusive video of the orchestra performing ‘Turkish March‘ to showcase just a glimpse of the magic you will experience on the night.

According to the Visit Dubai website, there are five more performances after opening night.

-November 16, 2021 at 7pm
-November 20, 2021 at 3pm
-January 13, 2022 at 7pm
-February 3, 2022 at 7pm
-March 8, 2022 at 8pm

Do note, these dates may change, so it’s worth double-checking if the show is still on before you make any plans.

What’s special about the Firdaus Orchestra?

Well, for one it is put together by AR Rahman, the celebrated Bollywood and Hollywood composer who has won Oscars and Grammy awards. He is best known for creating the soundtrack for Slumdog Millionaire. 

The orchestra he has put together is comprised of 50 musicians from across the Arab world pioneered by the Indian composer. The ladies hail from Oman, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and the UAE will debut a fusion of styles and genres at Expo 2020 Dubai.

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According to an interview with The National, AR Rahman stated the music the orchestra will perform will blend Western, Arabic and Indian styles.

AR Rahman stated, ‘ This ensemble has a very unique character as it’s symbolic of our changing world and evolution in music, particularly in the Middle East.’

He added that the ‘voices of the Firdaus Orchestra, comprising of artists from more than 23 nationalities across the region, are so different from anything we’ve heard in the west or the east; they represent a whole new sound which is very exciting.’

When speaking to the Expo 2020 team, AR Rahman stated that Firdaus Orchestra is a statement and an inspiration. It will diminish negative narratives about Middle Eastern people, narratives that say music is banned and women cannot come out and play music. In contrast, we’re talking about women forming an orchestra and entertaining everyone in a very pure way.

Images: Firdaus Orchestra social

For more What’s On Expo 2020 Dubai articles, head here.