Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 12 November 2019

Rod Stewart cancels appearance at Winter at Tantora festival in Saudi Arabia

It is not yet known exactly why the singer pulled out of his show, but he has said he was 'disappointed' to miss it

British singer and songwriter Rod Stewart will no longer perform at Winter at Tantora. Supplied. 
British singer and songwriter Rod Stewart will no longer perform at Winter at Tantora. Supplied. 

Rod Stewart has cancelled his appearance at Saudi Arabia's Winter at Tantora festival.

Stewart was announced as part of the annual festival, alongside Enrique Iglesias and Lionel Richie, in late September.

No official announcement has been made, but Stewart's name and photo have since disappeared from the festival site.

When Craig David, Il Divo and Jamiroquai were added to the line-up on Thursday, Stewart's name was conspicuously absent from the list of acts already announced.

A spokesperson for the festival confirmed he was "not part of the line-up any more".

“Due to personal circumstances, Sir Rod Stewart had to cancel his performance at Winter at Tantora," their statement said.

"Rod is disappointed as he was looking forward to performing in Saudi Arabia for the first time and hopes to play there in the near future."

The Winter at Tantora season runs from Thursday, December 19, 2019 until Saturday, March 7, 2020, and celebrates "nature, heritage and art at Al Ula".

Al Ula is home to Saudi Arabia's first Unesco World Heritage Site, Hegra (also known as Madain Saleh), which is set to open to the public in October 2020.

The kingdom opened its doors to international tourists earlier this year amid much fanfare.

Tourists can now obtain a 90-day, multiple-entry visa to visit the country.

The new e-visa or visa on arrival services have been extended to 49 countries, including the UK, US, Canada and Australia. The visa costs SAR 440 (Dh431) plus VAT.

Previously, special visas were included in the ticket price for Winter at Tantora.

Updated: November 7, 2019 10:28 AM

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