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20 October 2020 - 10 April 2021
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    Al Wasl Opera

    In a cultural milestone for the UAE, Expo 2020 Dubai has commissioned the nation's first opera

    About the opera

    A thousand years of culture will be brought to life through the Al Wasl Opera premiering at Dubai Opera on 21 October 2020. Sung in both English and Arabic, audiences will be regaled by a story centered on unity and communication, venturing from the UAE's Bedouin roots to its transition through forward-thinking to a modern multicultural hub and its aspirations for the future. The two-hour performances from 21-24 October will let you experience the true spirit of connection, the meaning of Al Wasl in English.

    The people behind Al Wasl Opera
    Combining Emirati and global talent, Al Wasl Opera is produced in collaboration with Welsh National Opera. Over 100 artists and musicians, and a production team of 70 professionals are coming together to make this celebration of the best global operatic talent a reality.
    Mohammed Fairouz - Composer

    “There is nothing more universal than opera and the theater in that way, to bring people together. I figured that if people can laugh together, cry together then anything is possible between them. They know one another in that moment.”

    Meet Mohammed
    Maha Gargash - Librettist

    “I think it is going to be beautiful. It is beautiful. I mean, the words say so much and I think with the addition of the music and the actual performance, it should be mind-blowing, I mean, we do not want to settle for anything less.”

    Meet Maha
    Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy
    Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy

    UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General of Dubai Expo 2020 Bureau

    “We wanted to create something new for Expo 2020 Dubai that reflects the dynamic, diverse, and tolerant nature of contemporary UAE and our deep-rooted culture and heritage. A new opera, the first for Emirati culture, is in many ways the perfect way for us to do this.”

    Education and Outreach Initiatives

    Al Wasl Opera - Expo 2020 Dubai
    Opera workshops for school children and teachers
    The world-renowned Welsh National Opera has designed a series of workshops: one targeted to school children, and another specially designed for teachers. Find out more about the two workshops and how you can participate.

    Learn more
    Choir singing in the desert
    Nasheed Al Wasl
    Making Al Wasl Opera open and accessible to children, Nasheed Al Wasl is a 30-minute children’s choral concert accompanied by a professional orchestra that will be performing at Expo 2020 Dubai. Find out how you can register your school choirs to join.

    Learn more
    Performers gathered together
    Atelier 2020
    World-class training in stage/cinema make up as well as a specialisation course in costume design, which is a first for the UAE and the region. These courses are in collaboration with Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation (DIDI) and London College of Make-Up.

    Register for courses at London College of Make-Up
    - Special Effects Make-Up (starts in January 2020)
    - Theatre & Stage Make-Up (starts in March 2020)
    - Fashion & Media Make-Up (starts in June 2020)

    Register for Costume Design at DIDI

    Opera experiences at Expo 2020

    Choir singing in the desert
    Nasheed Al Wasl
    Hear Nasheed Al Wasl performed at Expo by 250 children accompanied by a professional orchestra. Starting in November 2020, visitors will be treated to a series of 30-minute performances with extracts from the Al Wasl Opera.
    Seats inside opera theatre
    Opera 360
    Step into a 360° immersive experience that complements the Al Wasl Opera performances at Al Forsan Park. See and hear what it's like to be backstage, on stage and in the orchestra pit.
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