The case of the homeless ducks in Dubai...
I am just about returning to some sense of normality after the launch of what has been unanimously hailed as a major achievement in the UAE. We actually managed to deliver over 100 bands over a three day period in what is the first musical festival of its kind for the region. That said it was not without it’s problems. Notwithstanding visa issues and certain artists being ‘too scared’ to get on flights we also had the added tensions of homeless ducks. To clarify – as part of the main arena we drained a lake and built the most amazing stage that incorporated two palm tress either side. However what we failed to take into account was where the poor ducks where going to reside for the duration of the festival. Without going into great detail we managed to curtail a potential duck disaster and all ended on a mutually happy note. I can also say the lake has now been refilled and everybody is once again in their natural abode, including me.
Over the three days there were some amazing highlights. The Doves playing a veritable hitlist set under a cloudless starry sky, Shaun Ryder working hard to remember the words and try not to swear at the same time. He failed, but it didn’t matter. Young guns such as We Have Band, Sound of Guns and Bicycle Thieves played blistering shows that were lapped up by ecstatic crowds hungry for new music. Personal faves The Whip did their usual clinical job and won thousands of new fans in the process. The prominent common factor that ran through the whole event was the absolute joy on the faces of bands and fans alike. No-one could quite believe what they were witnessing and taking part in. It really did feel like we were making a little bit of history.
Big thanks need to go to the amazing teams in both Dubai and UK who worked endless hours to deliver what was an amazing spectacle. There was sweat, there were tears there was even a bit of blood spilled, but you did it! Well done.
Putting a festival on in the desert was never going to be easy. We now have year 1 firmly under our belt. We look forward to doing it all again next year, bigger and better! See you on the beach (again) in 2010.
Check out the amazing archive of images from everything that happened at Dubai Sound City at markmcnulty.typepad.com