This weekend sees the arrival of two widely anticipated homegrown music festivals: Sole DXB and Groove on the Grass, but that’s not all. From Brooklyn-born Nas to Pakistan’s Rahat Fateh Ali to the Dutch DJ Ferry, witness an eclectic roll call of global celebrities take the stage at the many world-class concerts happening this weekend in Dubai.
Nas is landing in d3
Dubai’s premier gathering for hip-hop and rap, Sole DXB is rising in the avenues of Dubai Design District this weekend. Born out of the city’s nascent sneaker scene, this three-day festival is a potpourri of street culture with live music, film screenings, art installations, brand activations and more. Dress in your freshest kicks and catch live performances by the likes of rap master Nas, trailblazer Roxanne Shanti and more, or check out the region’s most competitive streetball tournament at this unmissable culture carnival.
When: 6-8 December
Where: Dubai Design District
Where the grass is greener
The region’s epic EDM melting pot Groove on the Grass is arriving at the lawns of Emirates Golf Course on Friday. Watch out for experimental performances by Miami’s Danny Daze, Redshape, Gigi Masin and Chloe to name a few, along with an eclectic marketplace and pop-up art installations while you kick back with a psychedelic experience of sound, lights and good vibes.
When: 7 December, 5pm-3am
Where: Emirates Golf Club
Ustaad, which means master, isn’t a title easily earned but qawwal Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s claim to the position is well justified. Not only has he inherited his impressive skills from his late and legendary uncle Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, but he has also become a face of Sufi devotional music around the world. Poignantly poetic, his melodies entrance audiences whether they appear on humble stages accompanied by backup singers, tubla and sitar players or in the soundtracks of world-class Bollywood blockbusters.
When: 7 December, 9:30pm
Where: Dubai World Trade Centre
A dance invasion
This Friday, ANTS will overrun Meydan’s urban lounge and nighttime playground, Soho Beach. Presented by Ibiza-based UNITED ANTS, the venue is arranging sets by Andrea Oliva, Davide Squillace, YOUSEF and Francisco Allendes–four incredible and experimental DJs who have colonised dance floors around the world. Entrance is free, and Soho Garden’s atmosphere is electric, so don’t miss out on a night the underground music scene rises to the high tops of Meydan Grandstand.
When: 7 December
Where: Soho Garden, Meydan Grandstand
From one heart to another
If you’re in the mood for something sophisticated and classic, this is your ticket. The award-winning pianist Ovidio De Ferrari is performing compositions from his latest album ‘Heart to Heart’ and considering he was once described as the musical lovechild of Ludovico Einaudi and Victor Borge, you can bet he has something to offer. His emotive melodies can make a room full of strangers feel like family, so head over to the Royal Ballroom at the One&Only Royal Mirage to watch a piano virtuoso at work.
When: 8 December, 8pm
Where: Royal Ballroom, One&Only Royal Mirage
Hop on this boat
It’s always safe to assume Zero Gravity is hosting some global EDM celebrity or another. This weekend’s star performer hails from the Netherlands and has distinguished himself as a multi-genre music producer in the international festival circuits. Master mixer DJ Ferry Corsten is headlining a concert at the beachside venue with a line-up of the hits that put him on DJMag’s 'Top 100 DJs' poll for five years. Trance, progressive-house or electro: DJ Ferry can do it all.
When: 6 December, 5pm-3am
Where: Zero Gravity
Dine and dance
This event might not centre around a live music show, but you best bet it includes it. Kick off the festive season at Atlantis, The Palm's Cirque de Cuisine–a brunch with traditional holiday treats paired with signature dishes from gourmet eateries like Nobu, Bread Street Kitchen and more. The carnival-inspired dining experience will feature appearances by Santa and street performers, followed by a rocking evening at The Lost Chambers Aquarium. The hotel’s renowned resident DJs will play electrifying beats throughout the night so you can dance off the great meal that started it all.
When: 6 December, 7-11pm
Where: Atlantis, The Palm
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