As Dubai counts down for another thunderous performance by Jennifer Lopez on November 17, organisers have confirmed the 47-year-old multi-talented artist will be in the emirate for a one-night-only concert, as she juggles her residency in Las Vegas amidst judging a reality dance show, shooting for a crime-drama on NBC and weekends away in Paris with her newfound love.
Lopez or JLo will be performing an energetic 90-minute set at the Autism Rocks Arena, with organiser Thomas Ovesen, CEO of 117Live telling Gulf News tabloid! that the act will see “all her monster hits, along with shades of her Las Vegas residency and hopefully, music from her Spanish-language album.”
Pre-registration for the tickets starts on June 22, via 117live.com. Tickets are expected to go on general sale two weeks later. Details on prices and opening acts will be announced at a later date, organisers said.
With a career spanning over 18 years, Lopez first shot to fame in 1999 with her number one hit single If You Had My Love, the lead track from her debut studio album On the 6. Despite always standing the spotlight of global superstardom, 2017 really sees the singer come into her own, with an events-packed roster that would be the envy of any artist approaching 50.
Going Back to Her Roots
With Mirate, which debuted at the Billboard Latin Music Awards earlier this year, Lopez essentially returns to her Latin roots, marking her first all-Spanish album since 2007. The song, which ex-husband and now ‘good friend and mentor’, Marc Anthony produced, is a powerful, emotional ballad that moved those in the audience to tears.
Despite a five-month delay, the release date of the album is as yet unknown, however, the singer surprised fans last month with a sample of her new track, A Tu Lado, in a short video that was posted on her official Instagram account. The song features fellow Puerto Rican recording artist Nicky Jam. In the video, she’s in a car singing along to the unreleased track with her friend, with a post saying: “Me and Tiana making sure this Spanish album is ready.”
While fans are eagerly awaiting another duet on the album similar to the Anthony-Lopez rendition of Pimpinela’s Olvidame y Pega La Vuelta during the Latin Grammys, which hit No 1 on the US iTunes Latin Charts, only time will tell whether it breaks any new records. However, Ovesen said fans in the UAE can expect Lopez to bring in that bit of Latin spice onto the stage to cater to the “large Latino community here."
It's on TV!
While her legion of fans wait for her new album to drop sometime this summer, Lopez is keeping herself busy as judge and executive producer of the NBC reality show, World of Dance. Needless to say, the performer is a veteran at the judges table with American Idol under her belt; however, with World of Dance, Lopez is seeing her passion come alive on stage through other hopefuls looking for their turn in the spotlight.
But her NBC association doesn’t end there. The actor in her if also finding her creative outlet as she returns in the cop drama (which she also co-produces), Shades of Blue, which is now heading into its third season. After her short holiday in Paris earlier this month, Lopez has already headed to the shoot, which centres on a single mother and detective who is hiding dark secrets.
Some point out that the show renewal news comes early into the second season of the show, but for Lopez, life in the high life also includes juggling her All I Have residency at Axis at Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas, which returns in September.
However, it appears Lopez will have some downtime post her Dubai concert, with The Hollywood Reporter saying her live musical, Bye Bye Birdie, which she also produces has been postponed from December to 2018. The delay is due to “Lopez’s hectic schedule”, it said.
Based on the original 1960 Tony-winning musical and the 1963 film, Bye Bye Birdie centres on Conrad Birdie, who is scheduled to give someone ‘One Last Kiss’ before being drafted into the Army. However, his rock ‘n’ roll ways send his small town reeling, giving the teens Birdie fever, questioning morality and placing songwriter-agent Albert along with his sweetheart, Rosie (Lopez), in the thick of things.
The NBC version will highlight Rosie’s struggles as a Puerto Rican woman hitting middle age who is saddled with a commitment-phobic partner. She told reporters at the announcement that the musical would remain true to its roots. “We’re going to keep it period. It’s going to be very authentic. We just want to push the envelope of how great these live musicals can be. I’m excited to take it on as a producer and as a role.”
Love is in the Air
With a year such as hers, Lopez still seemed to find time for an envious ‘baecation’ with newfound love and former Yankees star, Alex Rodriguez. Seen in a series of Instagram posts that ended in the City of Love, the weekend away took the couple through Monte Carlo and St Tropez as well.
Then, it was off to Paris for J-Lo and A-Rod, their itinerary including a lunch at the Louvre where Lopez showed off her chic Gucci dress, before posing on the balcony in a shimmering golden gown, while Rodriguez looked dapper in a white blazer.
Rodriguez also posted the same, writing in his caption, “Weekend in Paris #thankfulandgrateful.” Reports of Rodriguez and Lopez’ courtship first emerged in March, when the couple made their public debut at the Met Gala.
Following their getaway, the 41-year-old Rodriguez spoke about Lopez on Extra, saying: “If you want to be together you are together. Our kids get along really well, we’re both from New York, we’re both Latin, we’re both in our forties, we’re really enjoying life, but she really is one of the most impressive and smartest human beings I have ever met.”
While a few hearts may be broken along the way (hint, Drake), for Lopez, this is only just the beginning of many more moves to make.
J-Lo’s Dubai Connection
- Dance Again, Dubai Media City Amphitheatre (2012)
This was Jennifer Lopez’s first live show in the Middle East, with naturally, Dubai emerging as her top choice for the performance. While her energetic performance brought the house down, the singer really stole the show when she raised the Lebanese flag on stage, marking the country’s Independence Day. It was during the same trip that she made an appearance at the Cavalli Club with then beau, Casper Smart.
- Dubai World Cup (2014)
Often cited as one of the best concerts ever to be staged in Dubai, Lopez had thousands stand up from the balconies, cheering her sultry performance of Let’s Get Loud, even as a few showed off their nifty salsa moves in the crowd.
- American Music Awards (2015)
Even though this was a 17-hour flight away in Los Angeles, Lopez still took a little bit of Dubai with her on to the American Music Awards stage in a stunning fuchsia ombre ‘50s-style designed by Michael Cinco. The Dubai-based Filipino powerhouse in renowned for his couture gowns, with an impressive list of celebrity clients.
- The concert that never happened 2006
Did you know Lopez was scheduled to perform in Dubai in 2006, but she suddenly cancelled all seven dates on her spring tour that year?