DUBAI, 22 November 2021 – Expo 2020 Dubai visit numbers have soared to 4,156,985, driven by strong take-up of the November Weekday Pass and a raft of sport, music and cultural events.
Boosting the figures up to 21 November were the sold-out Expo Run on 19 November – which saw 10,000 runners of all ages and abilities line up behind six Kenyan world champions for 3km, 5km and 10km runs around the Expo site – and two performances by the ever popular all-female Firdaus Orchestra.
Pakistani playback singer, songwriter, composer and actor Atif Aslam thrilled audiences with his hit songs on 17 November, while Expo’s Tolerance & Inclusivity Week featured more than two dozen events, including the three-day Te Aratini Festival of Indigenous and Tribal Ideas, which was hosted by Aotearoa New Zealand and featured performers from the UAE, Australia, Canada, Malaysia, Panama, Paraguay and the USA.
With more than 120,000 visitors taking advantage of the AED 45 November Weekday Pass offer, visit numbers are expected to keep growing strongly, with the final week of the month promising another varied and exciting line-up of talent and events.
The Expo School Programme, which has been welcoming school visits for 31 days, has attracted more than 200,000 pupils from private and public schools across the UAE. As part of the programme, students have enjoyed four dedicated school journeys around the Expo 2020 site, including themes such as The Legacy of the UAE, World of Opportunities, The Universe in Motion and The Sustainable Planet.
The Expo Young Stars programme staged five performances at Al Wasl Stage, showcasing the best talent from performers from schools such as Jazz Rockers institute of Dance, The Philippine School, Just Dance Fine Art Training Center and The Indian High School. In addition, 50 lucky students, comprising 20 nationalities, opened the Expo gates on World Children’s Day on 20 November.
Ahead of World Children’s Day, 400 students representing the Emirates Schools Establishment formed a ‘100K’ sign near Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion to celebrate 100,000 public-school visits to Expo 2020 since the mega-event opened on 1 October. The human installation was led by Her Excellency Jameela Al Muhairi, UAE Minister of State for Public Education.
Expo 2020 also joined forces with UNICEF and the UAE Ministry of Community Development to celebrate World Children’s Day with a slate of youth-led festivities that culminated in a spectacular concert at Al Wasl Plaza, which included Lebanese singer Yara, UNICEF Regional Ambassador for the Middle East and North Africa, who debuted We Want to Live, a new song about children.
Topping the list of upcoming crowd-pleasers are two of the GCC’s biggest music stars: veteran Kuwaiti singer Abdulla Al Ruwaished and Egyptian singer, composer and poet Mohamed Hamaki. Al Ruwaished will perform popular ballads from his 40-year career on the Jubilee Stage on 24 November, with festival favourite Hamaki presenting his pulsating rhythms and polished lyrics two days later on 26 November.
Ireland’s Grammy Award-winning Riverdance continues its toe-tapping run throughout this month with performances on 22, 23, 25 and 26 November, culminating with a Grand Finale performance on the Jubilee Stage at 1930 GST on 27 November.
Monday’s free women-only yoga classes, set against the backdrop of Surreal, the Expo 2020 water feature, have proven so popular they are to be extended, while the FIDE World Chess Championship, which starts on 24 November, is expected to attract strong interest from both players and the public, propelled by the success of the Netflix series The Queen’s Gambit. The championship – the highlight of the world chess calendar – will see Magnus Carlsen, the reigning world champion from Norway, defend his title against the winner of the Candidates Tournament, Russia’s Ian Nepomniachtchi, at Dubai Exhibition Centre.
Expo 2020’s virtual visitation rose to an incredible 22 million over the same period, mainly driven by the uptake of Live@Expo, which enables visitors to take a bespoke live virtual tour through the site.
Expo 2020 Dubai runs until 31 March 2022, inviting the world to join a celebration of unity, opportunity, creativity and sustainability that will help to shape a better, brighter future for everyone.