1 Yasalam concert series – Ferrari World, Abu Dhabi, UAE, November
Easily the biggest concert series of the year, the Yasalam F1 Concerts showcased first-rate headliners Beyonce, Jamiroquai, Kings of Leon and Aerosmith. Staged beneath the massive arch of Yas Island’s Ferrari World, the gigs were truly world-class and confirmed Abu Dhabi’s arrival as the region’s top destination for live events.
2 Celebrate Libya, Tripoli, Libya, September
Dubai-based Al Laith Scaffolding combined with UK-based Serious Stage and Atlantic Enterprises to construct one of the largest temporary stages ever erected for this controversial event celebrating 40 years of rule by Colonel Muammar Al Gaddafi.
Stage capacity: 5246 sq metres; width: 122m; depth: 43m; height: 27m.
3 Coldplay/Andrea Bocelli, Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, April
Coldplay’s first concert on Middle East soil coincided with the wildest weather seen in the UAE capital for years. Yet, the freak storm failed to dampen the spirits of the 15,000-strong crowd. The success of both gigs was a triumph for the locally sourced event production team, led by Flash’s Lee Charteris.
4 Desert Rock Festival, Festival City, Dubai, UAE, March
Inspired by the raucous promise of Motorhead, a crowd of 10,000 turned out for this year’s Desert Rock Festival in Dubai. The event showcased Al Laith’s recently acquired all-steel monster stage, whose 50 tonne capacity came in handy for supporting the massive lighting rig consisting of more than 100 pars, as requested by Lemmy and Co.
5 Gulf Bike Week Expo/Deep Purple, Dubai Media City, UAE, March
Featuring a headline performance by rock legends Deep Purple, this year’s Gulf Bike Week Expo was the biggest instalment of the event to date. Organiser Live Nation drafted in more than 14 UAE-based event management companies to ensure the success of the expo.