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Saudi Superstar Rabeh Saqr Set to Headline the Mother of the Nation Festival

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has unveiled the performance programme for the Mother of the Nation Festival 2019. Residents and visitors to Abu Dhabi can look forward to an unforgettable headline show from the Saudi superstar Rabeh Saqr at 8:30pm on Friday, 15th March, and an exciting performance by the popular International DJ Nicky Romero on Saturday, March 23rd at 10pm.

The 12-day festival will also feature performances from more than 50 different musical acts across three stages as part of 200 total acts across the festival. The diverse line-up brings together artists from 12 countries, highlighting the UAE’s rich cultural diversity and uniting visitors in a vibrant celebration of tolerance and camaraderie.

“We are proud to announce details of the entertainment programming for Mother of the Nation Festival 2019,” said Ameera Al Mazrouie, Festivals Development Head at DCT Abu Dhabi. “This year’s line-up has been designed to appeal to a diverse range of age groups and tastes, and will attract music fans from many different nationalities and backgrounds. By bringing together performers and attendees from countries around the world, the Festival will help to promote a vibrant cultural exchange that supports the goals of the national Year of Tolerance initiative. It gives us great pleasure to welcome these renowned performers to the UAE, and we look forward to an exciting event.”

Phenomenon Saqr requires little introduction to local audiences. Hailing from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, he has been consistently recognised as one of the finest voices of his generation throughout a career that spans almost four decades. Saqr released his first album in 1983 and has gone on to achieve enduring success, performing around the globe and establishing himself as one of the most respected superstars of the Arabic music world. An accomplished songwriter, he has also composed popular tracks for a number of other Arab stars including Nabeel Shuail, Abdullah Al Roushid, Rashed Al Majed, and Nawal Al Zoghbiin. Attendees of his headline show on Friday 15th March can expect to hear some of Saqr’s most beloved songs such as ‘Ya Nasiem Alail’, ‘Biscat’, ‘Sabrien’, ‘Al Mahabamin Allah’, and ‘Wa Fakarta Aghiezuk’.

The Festival is also set to welcome popular International DJ Nicky Romero to Abu Dhabi for the first time. The highly regarded performer will showcase his uplifting brand of Electronic Dance Music (EDM) with a 90-minute DJ set at the Main Stage on Friday 22nd March, immediately after the fireworks contest. In addition to his successful international DJ career, Romero is a talented producer who has created EDM anthems such as ‘Toulouse’, ‘I Could Be the One’, and the recent ‘Bittersweet’. He has worked with some of the biggest names in contemporary music, including Rihanna and Britney Spears. Romero’s track ‘I Could Be the One’, produced in collaboration with Avicii, has amassed over 185 million streams on Spotify alone. These successes paved the way for the founding of his own record label, Protocol Recordings, as an outlet for a diverse list of forward-thinking artists.

Romero said: “This will be the first time I’ve performed in Abu Dhabi and I’m very excited to make my debut in the UAE’s capital city. The spirit of the Festival captures a beautiful sentiment, one that I have witnessed constantly on my travels as an international DJ – the power of music to bring people together, regardless of age, culture or nationality. This is surely something to celebrate, and I can’t wait to get on stage and give the crowd a show to remember.”

Other high-profile artists performing at the Festival include Omar Dean, Amjad Shakir, and Jad & The Band, who attendees may recognise as contestants from the popular TV talent show ‘The Voice Ahla Sawt’. The trio are set to team up for a special collaboration that will see them sing three songs together on the Main Stage.

To celebrate Mother’s Day on Thursday 21st March, there will be a special choir performance featuring Ibrahim Aljneibi. Other acts lined up for the main stage include ABRI, Aziza Brahim, Boom Diwan, Chinua Hawk, Daffy & Flipp, Danny Aridi, Dany Neville, Fahad Al Arif, Fayha Choir, Jadal, Jawaher, Jaye & Foe, Layla Kardan, Majaz, Masha, Miami Band, NOON, Samvel Gasparyan Quartet, and Sons of Yusuf.

Meanwhile, the GASTROBEATS stage will come alive with exciting performances from Abbo, Adam Kadabra, AJ & the Gang , Aleksandra Krstic, Aman, As per Casper, Dina Rabadi, DJ Karrouhat, Echo Vessel, FAFA, FREEK, Jamie Wrecs, Jerome Deligero, Jindi, Leone Murphy, MONTEATH, Rony Sarkis, Scott Attew, SHÉBANI, and We Speak in Colours.

In line with DCT Abu Dhabi’s mandate to grow visitor numbers to Abu Dhabi, particularly from the key GCC market, Saqr’s headline act will be part of the newly launched “Abu Dhabi Khaleeji Music Series”, a series of concerts throughout 2019 that will feature a line-up of renowned regional artists.

In addition to the Festival activities at the Corniche, visitors to Abu Dhabi can experience a very special show as the legendary Cirque du Soleil takes its iconic Big Top to Abu Dhabi for the first time. The spectacular production ‘BAZZAR’ is a breathtaking, colourful homage to the Cirque du Soleil legacy, which will see a joyful troupe of acrobats, dancers and musicians craft an awe-inspiring spectacle. The show will be presented at Yas Island, Abu Dhabi from 6 – 16 March 2019. Tickets can be purchased exclusively from www.tixbox.com, with prices starting from AED 195 per person. All Cirque du Soleil BAZZAR ticket holders will enjoy complimentary entry to Mother of the Nation Festival.

The festival will not only bring world-class entertainment to the emirate, but will also offer visitors to Abu Dhabi the opportunity to benefit from a range of hotel rooms packaged with festival tickets, including a ‘Mother of the Nation Festival Escape’ special accommodation package at Centro by Rotana Hotels that includes entry tickets to the Festival for each adult. Tickets for kids are also available at special rates from the hotel. The package includes buffet breakfast, 15% off dining and complimentary WiFi access. Additional hotel and event ticket packages will soon be released for sale.

The Mother of the Nation Festival takes place on Abu Dhabi Corniche from 12 – 23 March 2019, and is open from 4pm – 10:30pm (Sunday to Wednesday) and 2pm – 11:30pm (Thursday to Saturday).

Online tickets have now been released for sale and can be purchased online by visiting 800tickets.com or www.motn.ae. Entry tickets are priced at AED 25 per adult and AED 20 for kids between 6 and 12 years of age. A Festival Family Pass is also available (2 adults + 2 children) for AED 290. Entry is free of charge for senior citizens (60 years and above), children below 6 years of age, people of determination, and Cirque du Soleil ‘BAZZAR’ ticket holders.

Tickets can also be purchased at the Festival gate.

Follow Mother of the Nation Festival on social media:

Facebook: Mother of the Nation Festival

Twitter: @MOTNFestival

Instagram: MOTNFestival

YouTube: Mother of the Nation Festival



Mother of the Nation 2019 schedule of performances:

Main Stage – Headliner Date Time
Rabeh Saqr Friday 15 March 8:30pm-10:30pm
Nicky Romero Friday 22 March 10:00pm – 11:45pm
Main Stage – Regional Headliners Date Time
Aziza Brahim Thursday 14 March 10:30pm-11:45pm
Boom Diwan Thursday 14 March 8:30pm-9:45pm
Daffy & Flipp Saturday 23 March 10:15pm-11:00pm
Dany Neville Saturday 23 March 8:45pm-9:45pm
Fahad Al Arif Friday 15 March 10:45pm-11:45pm
Jadal Saturday 16 March 8:30pm-10:15pm
Miami Band Thursday 21 March 8:30pm-9:30pm
Sons of Yusuf Saturday 23 March 9:00pm-9:30pm
Main Stage – Regional Support Date Time
ABRI Thursday 21 March 10:15pm-11:30pm
Amjad Shakir Band Saturday 16 March 6:45pm-7:45pm
Chinua Hawk Saturday 23 March 6:45pm-7:45pm
Danny Aridi Saturday 23 March 5:00pm-6:00pm
Fayha Choir Tuesday 12 March &
Wednesday 13 March
Jad & The Band Saturday 16 March 5:00pm-6:15pm
Jawaher Sunday 17 March 8:45pm-10:15pm
Jaye & Foe Monday 18 March 8:45pm-10:15pm
Layla Kardan Tuesday 19 March 9:15pm-10:30pm
Majaz Friday 15 March 5:00pm-6:15pm
Masha Friday 22 March 5:00pm-6:15pm
Mother’s Day Special Choir
with Ibrahim Aljneibi
Thursday 21 March 5:00pm-5:45pm &
NOON Friday 15 March 6:45pm-7:45pm
Omar Dean Saturday 16 March 10:45pm-11:45pm
Samvel Gasparyan Quartet Friday 22 March 6:45pm-7:45pm
Adam Kadabra + Dina Rabadi Tuesday 19 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
AJ & the Gang + DJ Karrouhat Saturday 23 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
As per Casper + Scott Attew Saturday 16 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Echo Vessel + Scott Attew Thursday 21 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
FAFA + FREEK Friday 22 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Jamie Wrecs + AMAN Tuesday 12 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Jerome Deligero + Jindi Wednesday 13 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Jerome Deligero + Jamie Wrecs Wednesday 20 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Leone Murphy + Abbo Monday 18 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
MONTEATH + Rony Sarkis Friday 15 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
SHÉBANI + Dina Rabadi Thursday 14 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
We Speak in Colours + Aleksandra Krstic Sunday 17 March 6:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:00pm & 10:00pm
Happiness Stage Date Time
LOUD ARABIA Friday 15 March & Saturday 16 March 8:30pm-9:00pm &
Mother’s Day Special Kids Choir Thursday 21 March 5:30pm-5:45pm
Music Khaleeji Mini Band Friday 15 &
Saturday 16 March
4:30pm-5:00pm, 6:45pm-7:15pm,
& 9:00pm-9:30pm
Super Percussion Wednesday 20 March 4:00pm & 10:00pm
Super Percussion Thursday 21 March 4:00pm & 10:30pm



About The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi:

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction that enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike.  The Department manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment.  Its policies, plans and programmes relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including Louvre Abu Dhabi, Zayed National Museum and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.  The Department of Culture and Tourism supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honour the emirate’s heritage.  A key role played by the Department is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wide-ranging stakeholder base.


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