Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 20 May 2019

Musical acts we think could play Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena this year

From Fleetwood Mac to A$AP Rocky, the musical acts that could have space in their diaries to stop in the UAE this year

From left: ASAP Rocky, Fleetwood Mac and Ariana Grande
From left: ASAP Rocky, Fleetwood Mac and Ariana Grande

The Coca-Cola Arena is officially here. We toured the impressive 17,000-capasity music, sport and entertainment space last week and were promised news of exciting new acts very soon.

Russell Peters and Maroon 5 have already been confirmed for the bill on June 6 and 14, respectively, with Maroon 5 fitting their Dubai date in between a show in Paris on June 11 and the Netherlands on August 31.

The advantage of such a huge indoor arena open up in the UAE is the country’s new position on the arena tour map, something we weren’t 100 per cent part of, previously.

So, we decided to dig a little deeper, and check out some international musical acts’ touring schedules, both festival and arena, to see if a stop in the UAE could slot in between their European, Asian and Southern Hemisphere dates.

This is entirely speculative and by no means comprehensive, but hoping that the Coca-Cola Arena really does open with a bang, here’s what we uncovered:

Fleetwood Mac

When? Between June 19 and August 8, or September 22 and October 27

The British/American Dreams, Landslide and Everywhere singers are wrapping their European tour at London’s Wembley Stadium on June 18. They then have around a six-week break before heading south, to kick of their Australasian tour in Perth on August 9.

This week it was announced that they would reschedule North American tour dates, which they had to cancel this April as Stevie Nicks recovered from flu. They kick the rescheduled dates off in Boston on October 28, wrapping up in the Canadian city of Edmonton on November 12.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 07: Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac performs on stage in concert at Acer Arena on December 7, 2009 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Gaye Gerard/Getty Images)
Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac performs on stage in concert at Acer Arena in Sydney, Australia. Getty Images

Queen

When? Between August 24 and January 24

Throughout summer 2019, Queen, with new front man Adam Lambert, will be touring North America, wrapping up in Charlotte, North Carolina on August 23. They then have a few months off before their 2020 series of tours kicks off in Japan on January 25, before continuing south to New Zealand and Australia in February.

We have heard whispers that a December 2019 stop in Dubai could be on the cards.

Adam Lambert, centre, performs with British guitarist Brian May, right, and the band Queen during pre-final festivities that also included a concert by Sir Elton John.
Queen + Adam Lambert perform. Getty Images

Ariana Grande

When? After October 13

The Thank u, Next singer is touring North America and Europe all summer. As it stands, her final date is in Zurich’s Hallenstadion on October 13; no Southern Hemisphere dates have been announced by the singer, but her touring schedule at least looks free from mid-October.

Ariana Grande will not perform at this year's Grammy Awards. Reuters
Ariana Grande is currently touring North America. Reuters

The Cure

When? Best guess is between August 17 and 22

The Cure are on the road and hitting the festival circuit hard this year. Their next dates are in Australia performing at the Sydney Opera House from May 24 to 28, before they travel north to perform at Ireland’s Malahide Castle on June 8. They then have a run of festivals, from Pinkpop in the Netherlands on June 9 to Paleo Arts et Spectacles in Switzerland on July 25. Not wasting any time, they then cross the planet to play Japan’s Fuji Rock Festival, which kicks off on July 26.

The Just Like Heaven singers then travel west to play in Russia, Norway, Sweden and Finland back to back from August 3 to 11.

However, between their Glasgow Summer Sessions show in Scotland on August 16 and their Rock En Seine show in France on August 23, they have no gigs announced.

They have, however, got tiny gaps between shows across the planet, so this is an almost impossible band to make an educated guess on!

Inductees Reeves Gabrels, from left, Simon Gallup and Robert Smith, of The Cure, perform at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Barclays Center on Friday, March 29, 2019, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
The Cure perform at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony at the Barclays Center on Friday, March 29, 2019. AP

A$AP Rocky

When? Between July 29 and August 15

Rapper A$AP Rocky is currently preparing for his Australian tour and a summer festival run, which will last from April 26 until May 11. On May 18 he is playing Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, before heading to Europe on June 26 to perform in Paris.

There are two- or three-day gaps between his European dates throughout July and August, but the biggest gap is between his final Tomorrowland Festival date in Belgium on July 28 and his Blockfest appearance in Finland on August 16. His final public tour date is currently scheduled for August 18.

SINGAPORE, SINGAPORE - APRIL 13: A$AP Rocky performs at the MARQUEE Singapore grand opening celebration on April 13, 2019 in Singapore. (Photo by Christopher Jue/Getty Images for MARQUEE Singapore)
A$AP Rocky performs at the Marquee Singapore grand opening celebration on April 13, 2019 in Singapore. Getty Images

Chemical Brothers

When? Between July 19 and 25

Electro duo The Chemical Brothers are wrapping their European festival tour on July 18 in Germany, before flying to Japan for Fuji Rock Festival on July 26. After one night in Canada on August 3, they are back in Europe for the rest of the month, wrapping up for the summer on August 24 at the UK’s Creamfields. They also have a UK arena tour scheduled for November 2019.

A handout photo of The Chemical Brothers *NO CREDITS* *** Local Caption *** al22no-cover-chembros.jpg
The Chemical Brothers are currently touring their 'No Geography' album. Supplied

Kiss

When? Between September 17 and November 15

Kiss are currently touring their End of the Road World Tour. This summer will see them play a number of European dates, wrapping up in Scotland on July 16. They then head stateside to perform across the UAE and Canada throughout August and September. Perhaps before they head south to Perth, Australia for November 16, a UAE date could happen?

From left, Gene Simmons, Tommy Thayer and Paul Stanley of the band Kiss, which was formerly known as Wicked Lester. The band found popularity with a change of name and image. Jo Hale / Getty Images
From left: Gene Simmons, Tommy Thayer and Paul Stanley of Kiss. Getty Images

Lewis Capaldi

This is a long shot - though I am very aware that plenty of the other bands I have listed here are long shots, too. But fresh success Lewis Capaldi’s debut album Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent hasn’t even been released yet, and the Scottish singer has already announced an arena tour, which is taking him between the US and European cities from May 4 until March 2020, so perhaps the Coca-Cola Arena will be a stop.

Note: This is entirely based on international touring schedules, we haven’t counted acts like John Mayer, Paul McCartney, Elton John the Spice Girls or Anderson Paak, who are just touring one country or area.

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Read more:

A first look inside Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena: more on the acts, the food and future plans

Dubai Arena officially named Coca-Cola Arena after 10-year deal is signed

Meet Billie Eilish, the 17-year-old bringing 'home-recorded terror-pop' to the world

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Updated: May 4, 2019 03:03 PM

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