All you need to know about the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai
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All you need to know about the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai

All you need to know about the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai

Viewers can watch the 90-minute opening ceremony via a free global live stream and also at over 430 locations in the UAE

Expo 2020 Dubai opening ceremony

The opening ceremony of the six-month long Expo 2020 Dubai gets underway tonight and will be streamed live at 7.30pm (local time) at more than 430 locations across the UAE.

Viewers can watch the 90-minute opening ceremony via a global live stream, available on and Expo TV from 7.30pm onwards. Screens will be set up in locations ranging from airports and shopping malls to hotels and other landmarks.

The streaming locations for the opening ceremony includes more than 240 hotels nation-wide, including Emaar’s Rove, Armani, Address Hotels & Resorts, and Vida Hotels & Resorts, as well as Accor, Marriot, Hilton, IHG, Rotana, Jumeirah, Hyatt International and Atlantis The Palm.

Also, 17 Majid Al Futtaim malls, plus City Walk, Nakheel Mall and Ibn Battuta Mall, as well as 50 Jashanmal locations across Dubai and Abu Dhabi, 97 Mediclinics, Dubai and Abu Dhabi International Airports, Zabeel Ladies Club and Sharaf DG will also stream the event.

Viewings are taking place at various locations across the UAE including in Umm Al Quwain, Yas Plaza in Abu Dhabi and across various locations in Ras Al Khaimah, including the Corniche, Al Marjan Island and Manar Mall.

Ajman Heritage District and Fujairah Fort will also host a live broadcast, the latter accompanied by an evening of other festivities that include a mini village, folklore bands, traditional crafts, heritage displays and traditional food.

Emirates, the Official Airline Partner of Expo 2020 Dubai, meanwhile will also stream it across its first and business class lounges across the world.

What to expect?
Among those slated to perform are world-famous tenor Andrea Bocelli; Grammy-nominated, Golden-Globe-winning actress, singer and songwriter Andra Day; platinum-selling British singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding; mega-star pianist Lang Lang; and four-time Grammy winner Angelique Kidjo.

A 1,000-strong cast and crew are involved in presenting the 90-minute opening ceremony that will showcase the Expo site’s Al Wasl Plaza’s dome – the world’s largest 360-degree projection surface. Scenes on the 130-metre-wide surface can be seen from both inside and outside the dome.

The Expo organisers added that the laser projectors use reduced power, while more than 1,000 speakers will amplify the audio, providing surround-sound acoustics. A total of 30,000 individually controlled fairy lights will twinkle across Al Wasl Plaza’s garden, guiding the way to the dome.

“There are two ‘wow’ moments that I am particularly excited about. There is a global moment that happens in the middle of the show where technology is the centrepiece. We are presenting the world to the world: it comes out of this space and then it goes away again – and it’s magical. Then, for the finale, there’s a UAE experience that is a simple, elegant piece of scenery that becomes the centrepiece of the space,” said Nick Eltis, technical director, FiveCurrents on what to expect at the opening ceremony.

“We are not only preparing for the Opening Ceremony, but also in parallel to that we are also preparing for the full 182 days of programming hours, and then, of course, Expo’s legacy. This is a venue that will last a lifetime,” he added.

Will there be fireworks?
Fireworks displays will take place on the evening of Friday, October 1, at 8.20pm GST at Dubai Festival City, The Frame and The Pointe, Palm Jumeirah.

Both The Pointe and Dubai Festival City will incorporate their fountains into a dazzling light and sound show themed on Expo 2020, while The Frame façade will be lit up in Expo colours. The flags of participating countries will also be displayed at each, with booths on the ground for purchasing Expo 2020 tickets.

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