Get fit at Abu Dhabi's star-studded Yasalam Festival
Assi Helani, Ciara and Mohammad Assaf will be one of the stars performing at the Yasalam Festival. (Image: Facebook)
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The fifth edition of Yasalam, the city-wide entertainment programme in the run-up to the Formula One race, promises to be bigger and better, including longer live event days.
This year, residents and visitors will be treated to top quality concerts by music legends — both international and regional — at concert venues on Yas Island and the corniche.
Across town, several activities and community programmes for a full 50 days, set at different locations, are sure to immerse everyone into the energy of motor sport.
“The fifth year of Yasalam Festival will have bigger and broader entertainment programmes than what we had in the previous years,” said Flash Entertainment’s vice-president of Marketing and Communications Mike Fairburn — organiser of the event.
Healthy living is central to this year’s festival, so initiating Yasalam on September 15 at Al Forsan is the first-ever ‘Get Driver Fit’ challenge by Daman. The eight-week programme, which includes free fitness classes, seeks to get the community educated, active and engaged.
‘Beats on the Beach’ will now run for three nights (October 31–November 2) with the newly-added third night showcasing Filipino superstars Mr Pure Energy Gary Valenciano and Philippines’ ultimate performer Vina Morales.
Other musical entertainers include American pop starlet Ciara, Lebanese star Assi El Hellani, UAE multi-instrumentalist Shamma Hamdan, Arab Idol winner Mohammed Asaf and runner-up Salma Rachid. Local rockers Jay Wud, Beat Antenna, Chronicles of Khan and Bull Funk Zoo are sure to keep the crowd entertained. More international artistes will be announced in the coming weeks, according to Fairburn.
The F1 Fan Zone (October 24–November 3) at the corniche is also expanded with more race-themed activities and with a plan to bring in more than one F1 driver for the autograph session.
The Car Parade (October 25), another new addition at Yasalam this year, is expected to bring together all car enthusiasts to participate in a 10-km parade from Yas Island to the corniche then back. The parade will be joined by a children’s parade with the Abu Dhabi Police band leading the procession.
“Cars will be dressed with the UAE colours in the build-up to the national day,” said Fairburn.
At the brand new Yas Marina Village on Yas Island, celebrations will be under way from October 24–25 with performers, musicians and children’s activities that promise fun-filled days for the entire family.
The After-Race Concerts boast a line-up of some of the biggest names in the industry and will feature Arabic acts for the first time. Egyptian pop star Amr Diab, X Factor Arabia judge Hussain Al Jassmi and Lebanese artiste Elissa will headline the first day (October 31).
They will be followed by 17-time Grammy Award winner Jay Z on November 1 and multi-platinum selling group Muse on November 2. Pioneers of the post-punk era and one of modern music’s most influential groups, Depeche Mode, will close the concert on the championship day on November 3.
Adding to the thrill of Yasalam for race ticket-holders is the new and improved Y1 Access benefits programme. Race ticket-holders will receive a pair of complimentary invitations to the Thursday After-Race Concert and the first 15,000 UAE-based customers will receive two invitations to the Friday night concert. The programme also ensures Golden Circle access for the lucky 200 race ticket-holders each day, as well as, 20 per cent discount on general admission tickets for selected Flash events this year.
Yasalam, which means ‘Wow’, was launched as part of the inaugural Grand Prix in 2009 and now has evolved into one of the most anticipated community events every year. The programme activities and events have attracted over one million attendees, both residents and visitors, and have seen more than 150 performing artistes, including 20 multi-award winning international and regional superstars.
For more information about Yasalam or to register for the ‘Get Driver Fit’ and Car Parade, visit www.yasalam.ae.