Mother of the Nation Festival 2018

Emirati Superstar Eida Almenhali to Headline
Mother of the Nation Festival 2018
Popular local singer leads this year’s line-up, which also features an exciting and  eclectic mix of performances

Festival will feature music and comedy with something for everyone to enjoy

Abu Dhabi, UAE – 10 March 2018: Mother of the Nation Festival is back for its third year, running from 22nd until 31st March, with an exciting array of live performances and signature events planned for the 10-day event including a headline performance from Emirati singer, composer and poet Eida Almenhali.

The festival, which will take place at the Abu Dhabi Corniche, will feature more than 100 workshops, performances, and activities across the main stage and throughout the festival grounds for the duration of the event.

Organised by The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), the festival pays tribute to the living legacy, far-reaching values, and progressive vision of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union, and President of the Supreme Council of Motherhood and Childhood.

As with previous years, music enthusiasts can expect entertainment from a variety of accomplished artists, all of which have brought their talents to Abu Dhabi Corniche in a fantastic showcase. This year, inspired by the diverse cultures found throughout UAE, a diverse range of performances is set to captivate audiences across the main stage and pop-up stages, reflecting the nation’s embrace of international perspectives that further enrich the community.

Highlights include:
1. Eida Almenhali: Emirati singer, composer and poet Eida Almenhali started his artistic career by performing poetry without musical instruments, a practice known as Al-Shallat. After he excelled at this he started singing, and released his debut album in 2002, entitled Mahma Jara, which enjoyed massive success. As well as releasing a further six albums, the Emirati star has participated in several regional festivals including Hala Febrayer, Layali Dubai, Muscat Nights, Salalah Concerts, and at the Jerash Festival.

2. Mohammed Al Shehhi: A Khaleeji music trailblazer and YouTube sensation, Emirati musician Mohammed Al Shehhi blends the tradition of Khaleeji music with modern western beats. His talent was immediately noticed after he began posting his music online, and he quickly amassed an enormous YouTube following (his biggest hit, Kashf Al Mahabbah, topped 34 million views!). He is now a star in his own right, and in 2017 his work was even included in the programme at the prestigious Dubai Opera.

3. Ali Al Sayed: Prepare for a bucket-load of laughs as renowned comedian Ali Al Sayed brings a wealth of entertainment to the stage for all ages to enjoy. The highly celebrated performer was named “Comedian of the Year” by Esquire, and “one of the most influential comedians in the world” by Toastmasters magazine. His satirical twists on life in the UAE and the peculiar characters he encounters here have been the source of many performances on stages all over the world. He is currently preparing Season 2 and 3 of Comedy Central Arabia’s “Comedy Central Presents… Stand-up”.

4. Hayajan: Hailed as the Arabic Coldplay, Hayajan is an alternative rock band formed in 2011 by YouTube a cappella singer Alaa Wardi, consisting of four Jordanian members and one Saudi Arabia-based. Musician, composer, singer, songwriter and audio engineer Wardi was living in Saudi Arabia and already something of a musical prodigy before he met the four other Jordanian members of Hayajan. Something about the eclectic mix of tastes and talent clicked, and the band made their debut in 2011 with the release of their single Ween El-Kalam on YouTube. The reception exceeded all expectations and they released their first album Ya Bay in May 2013, containing eight original songs and two cover tracks (by Pink Floyd and Radiohead), which featured lyrics in Arabic.

5. Dancing Fire: No one will want to miss this breath-taking spectacle, where fireballs and tall towers of flames will blaze in a choreographed dance of fire over the waters of the Corniche. Wherever you are in the grounds, you’ll be sure to catch a glimpse of and feel the primal power of fire as it lights up the sky and captivates the crowd.

With such a hotly-anticipated line-up, featuring talent across various genres and from across the Middle East, the Mother of the Nation Festival offers visitors a truly all-encompassing experience that is sure to bring families closer together.

Last year’s edition attracted more than 197,000 visitors, and the 2018 edition of this progressive festival is set to once again offer an unforgettable experience for guests from every culture and generation. The event will honour Sheikha Fatima’s inspirational values of Empowerment, Conservation, Collaboration and Sustainability through a commemorative Main Pavilion, and four distinct ‘activation zones’, which will cover everything from music to comedy. Each zone will promote a distinct concept highlighting the journey that every individual takes in developing from a playful child to a progressive adult through familial care and motherhood.

The festival will take place on the capital’s Corniche Beach from 4pm to midnight during weekdays, and 2pm to midnight at the weekend.

The full schedule of concerts and performances will be announced soon. For more information visit:



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