The fact that the fall season has arrived to stay in Dubai, does not in any way mean the city is slowing down or preparing for winter hibernation. Quite the contrary, in fact, as the cooler months are actually Dubai’s peak tourist season, thanks to the fact that temperatures remain warm but the fall to much milder and pleasant numbers. Overall, a fantastic time to be in Dubai, especially when you read about all the events and entertainment options lined up for this month.
My top picks include the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series Final at the Dubai Marina on 28th October, the elegant stylings of Sara Bara’s flawless flamenco dancing on 12th October and the spooky Mexican-style festivity of “Fiestas de los Muertos” celebrated at the end of the month, on 27th October, and almost coinciding with the western world’s Halloween festivities. Thirsty for more? Just keep reading, I’ll give you all the details on where to be, when and at what time.
Dance in motion
Sara Baras, Voces Suite Flamenca (13 – 14th October)
Spanish flair comes to Dubai in the form of passionate, intricate dancing, skilfully performed by flamenco dancing queen, Sara Baras, Spain’s most internationally famous dancing export. The world’s finest flamenco dancer and choreographer of the times will be in Dubai for two nights, giving two outstanding performances on 13th and 14th October at the Dubai Opera. With a brand new show set to wow audiences, Miss Baras will perform her “Voces, Suite Flamenca” number to the live guitar strumming and vocal chords of 15 “cantaores” and flamenco musicians. All perfectly blend to captivate and lull you in a powerful, awe-evoking trance. As the Daily Telegraph once said of Sara Baras’ emotional performances “you just can’t take your eyes off”.
Dancing Drums by Shobana (21 – 22nd October)
Bringing a completely different dancing style to the stage, the entrancing combination of colourful costumes, powerful drum beats and rhythmic dance movements, the “Dancing Drums – Trance” performance arrives for the first time in Dubai and it intends to leave a mark. Expertly choreographed, styled and performed by world-acclaimed Bharatanatyam danseuse and actress Shobana, the captivating dances, flurry of colours and accompanying music will give viewers a magnificent introduction to Indian traditions, poetry and culture through vivid imaging and admirable body contortions. It’s on at the Centrepoint DUCTAC theatre on 21st and 22nd October. This dazzling show with elements of Qawwali Bollywood theatrics and electronic music kicks off at 7:30 p.m. Better not be late!
Jose Carreras Final World Tour (8th October)
For one last time, legendary Spanish tenor, Jose Carreras, will be performing live on stage as part of his last ever world tour. Ending his career with a bang he will be making a stop in Dubai for two opera performances, one on 4th October and another on 8th October, both times at the Dubai Opera. The show starts at 8 p.m. and during his stellar performance, Carreras will be accompanied by Soprano Nataliya Kovalova and conductor David Gimenez. All group box tickets have already sold out so you have very limited time to find yourself a ticket for this last chance performance. The clock is ticking!
Vivaldi’s Four Seasons at the Dubai Opera (11th October)
Perhaps classical music’s most famous and best known musical piece, the baroque melodies of Four Seasons is Antonio Vivaldi’s most celebrated work. Reviving it with a fresh approach that is intended to make audiences feel as though if listening to it for the first time ever, Italian violinist Fabio Biondi brings it back with a flawless performance at the Dubai Opera this 11th October at 8 p.m. The show will comprise five different performances from Adagio in G minor to Canon in D. The cherry on the icing will be final performance of the Four Seasons.
Cello Recital by Istvan Vardai (20th October)
A young and admirably gifted Hungarian cello player is coming to Dubai to treat classic-loving audiences to its rich timbre and melodic fluidity. The past winner of the ARD Cello Competition in Munich 2014, Istvan Vardai already been wooing audiences from the world over with his talented performances. From London to Paris, New York, Vienna and Prague, Mr Vardai adds Dubai to his collection of stages this coming 20th October. The chosen venue for his upcoming performance will be the One&Only Royal Mirage hotel in The Palm and the show is scheduled for 8 p.m. Tickets are available through the Dubai Concert Committee (DCC).
If you’re a fashion lover, you couldn’t have picked a better month to visit Dubai, as there will be not one but two different fashions events. Read on to pick which one to attend.
Arab Fashion Week (5 – 10th October)
Taking centre stage until this Sunday, the eight edition of Arab Fashion Week (AFW) is dazzling Dubai’s fashionistas with its catwalk shows and special designer events. This marks Dubai’s official fashion week, representing the designing talent of a total 22 Arab countries. Where to enjoy the fashion action? The fashion show’s main venue is the Meydan Hotel and to find out more about catwalk timings and the full schedule of events, you’re best checking out their official webpage at arabfashionweek.org. Hurry, there’s only three more days left of Arab fashion action! Get your dose before it’s too late!
Fashion Forward Dubai SS17 (19 – 22 October)
Dubai’s launching fashion platform takes over the city on a four-day-long mega event, celebrated biannually and bringing the most diverse line-up of fashion names around the world. Brands from all corners of the planet converge here to celebrate the season’s most stylish designs and draw inspiration from the regional world of fashion. Fashion Forward Dubai (FFWD) exhibits the local fashion industry and gives exposure to Middle-Eastern fashion household. A series of talks and shows will be arranged during the event’s duration and visitors can book themselves in at exclusive private events, enjoy tasty bites that are as elegant as the haute couture on show and dance the night away at spectacular after-parties. The venue is Hai d3, a bespoke location for the event at Dubai Design District. To get tickets for FFWD SS17 and be part of all the runway shows and fashion action you must first register at fashionforward.ae
Little (and not so little) rascals
STACK: a LEGO adventure (19 – 22 October)
A fascinating opportunity to immerse in a fully stackable LEGO world of epic proportions arrives to Dubai this month. Grown-ups and children alike will relish the wide variety of stacking options with fully unlimited access to an incredible amount of LEGO’s iconic and world-famous bricks, to build and design as you wish. In the meantime, everyone can participate as spectators and watch in awe as experts create gigantic LEGO sculptures right in front of your eyes. And just so that parents don’t feel too out of place in this kid-infested world, there will also be a dedicated AFOL (Adult Fans of LEGO) area, a creation zone with an art gallery featuring true works of LEGO art. To top it all off, fun competitions and interactive games will be at the heart of it all, for young and old. The chosen venue to host the event is Skydive Dubai and you can book tickets in advance at stackitevents.com.
A bout of laughter - The Best of Barmy Britain (8 – 10 October)
Youngsters who enjoy having their funny bone tickled (and who doesn’t?) while learning a few history facts in the process are in for a very special treat in Dubai this week with the arrival of the Horribly Histories team at the Madinat Theatre. The incredibly funny and talented group from The Birmingham Stage Company is making their way to Dubai for a hilarious look back in time at some of Britain’s most important past events and characters. On at 4 p.m from 8th to 10th October., kids of all ages will whole-heartedly laugh at the entertaining re-inactions of Tudor and Victorian times; from Fat King Henry VIII to Vile Queen Victoria and revolting Romans, the comedy, irony and parody promises a fun evening for parents and children alike.
Junior Desert Warrior Challenge (20th October)
Part of the Desert Warrior Challenge tournament for adults taking place in Dubai later this month - and of which I go into more detail in the Sporting Action section further below - little ones also have a space in which to test their stamina and endurance on this amazing obstacle course.
Adventurous, spirited and sporty children in search of a challenge can enlist themselves (or rather their parents can) and feel like action superheroes for a day. Their dedicated and fully adapted course promises thrills and spills for the most intrepid rascals.
Pakistan vs West Indies cricket match (13 – 17 October)
Cricketing action comes to Dubai as part of the World Twenty20 Test Match Series with an exciting encounter between the West Indies and Pakistan teams from 13th to 17th October. It will mark a historic moment as both teams meet to battle it out on the Day & Night Test Match for the first time ever. A thrilling game to watch, no doubt, and the best seats are expected to sell out soon, so there isn’t much time to get your hands on one!
Red Bull Cliff Diving Finals (27 October)
One of my highlights of the month this October, the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series Final makes it to Dubai for one sensational competition, the worlds eyes will be on. This adrenaline-pumping high diving tournament will see some of the world’s most daring and talented divers take the plunge against the most scenic of backdrop with jaw-dropping vistas all around. The diving platform will be Pier 7 at Dubai Marina, which will be turned into a 28-metre-high diving board for the occasion. Join the crowds and watch in amazement as divers leap into the azure abyss and make a splash.
Desert Warrior Challenge (21st October)
Dubai is getting their own edition of obstacle race course action with the arrival of Desert Warrior Challenge, the ultimate endurance-testing feat of muscle power, stamina and mental focus comes in three different courses: Extreme, Ultimate and Fearless, as well as a Junior course for children.
Anyone feeling up to the challenge can enrol as a participating warrior for a fee and a different one applies according to each course. The place to do so is online at desertwarriorchallenge.com and the action will unfold at the Dubai Training Police Facility where participants can also train before the big day. Who will be crowned champion?
Just for fun
POPCON (27 - 29th October)
Celebrating all things pop-culture related, this colourful fair is set to be the biggest festival of this kind in the world, ever! From comics to cult films, sagas, movies and TV series, all your favourite stars and characters will be colliding on a single space. Awesome costumes are guaranteed as are plenty of fun options. There’s an all-important anima and cosplay competition plus the attendance of top celebrities form a wide variety of industries, including Marvel, Sanrio and Disney. The hosting pace will be the Autism Rocks Arena.
Fiesta de Los Muertos (27th October)
Part of the above POPCON extravaganza, the Fiesta de Los Muertos (Party of the Dead) is nother one of my highlights of the month. This deadly party, themed around the Mexican Day of the Dead, where they traditionally remember and celebrate their beloved and departed with a full-on fiesta, will see everyone encouraged to dress up as their favourite hero or villain, while making the most of the live music and flowing cocktails. The Autism Rocks Arena will be the stage.
This standalone mega party is set to become a yearly event, with Major Lazer headlining the line-up of performing acts and All Saints also giving a live rendition of their songs. UAE’s own dance-pop duo Hollaphonics will also be grabbing the mic and closing the night. This spooky party is all about monstrous beats, multi-genre sounds and underground bands taking the spotlight. All against the spookiest, most Halloween-apt, atmosphere. You’re dead if not there!
That’s a wrap!
Well, that’s it for this month’s top events in Dubai this October, but in case you’re not able to make it to the trendiest of emirates this month, keep your eyes peeled for the next edition of the Dubai calendar, where I’ll be giving you all the info on November’s hottest events, acts and festivities. Come back to this space in a few weeks to plan the perfect Dubai holiday in November.