Emerging as one of the Middle East’s most frequently visited destinations, Saudi Arabia have well and truly embraced the endless possibilities that come along hosting live events. When it comes to a certain niche market of visitors, the kingdom’s assistant minister for tourism has more than made clear of the increase that they are expected to witness in the number of concerts held in their country.
Showing a promising start in the change towards a different direction for Saudi Arabia’s live entertainment sector, the higher powers of the country have made more than certain that both locals and visitors will be experiencing not only their culture and traditions, but at the same time, also attend concerts that feature some of the most popular artists from around the world. Proving just that, the recent Formula 1 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was followed by a series of post-race concerts, where the likes of Justin Bieber, Jason Derulo, A$AP Rocky and David Guetta all performed.
With an expected rise of 500 or 600% at the number of live concerts from 2022 and onward, the inaugural MDLBEAST XP Music Conference provided yet another indication of how significant live events can be for destinations such as Saudi Arabia. Having also hosted the successful MDLBEAST Soundstorm Festival, there is a clear affection towards the electronic dance scene, as each year since the very first festival back in 2019, the lineup’s have featured an array of the biggest names within our community. Shifting the focus back to the XP Music Conference that has only just concluded, Princess Haifa bint Mohammed Al Saud was a guest speaker, with her outtake on the matter being the following;
“People used to travel for nature, and then they started to travel for culture and now it’s about lifestyle. It’s about meeting other like-minded people from across the globe and sharing what they are passionate about. The creative industries, such as music, is at the very heart of that. You are talking about 25% of the UK and US population, pre-Covid-19, of course, travelling to attend at least one music festival a year. This tells you where the world is shifting and where it is growing. So where we had 101 concerts in Saudi Arabia in 2019, before the pandemic, we are looking at increasing that number by 500 or 600% from 2022 on.”
Acknowledging the need to venture along the live sector within their region is one thing, but at the same time, the reality sinks in when it comes to how “supercharged” the music scene actually is by governing bodies in the country. As more and more private organisations are bound to emerge, there is a clear opportunity awaiting Saudi Arabia and their ability of becoming a lead live events destination.
Image Credit: Anthony Black Photography
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