Saudi Arabia is having its most exciting year yet. Could the once ultra-conservative kingdom (where muftis often declared music haram) turn into a haven for music festivals?
The Kingdom opened its first club last June, and then the Black-Eyed Peas took audiences straight back to the early 2000s last December. And just last week, Lil Wayne performed in Riyadh alongside Atlanta rapper Future. And next week, the Saudi capital will host one of the region’s newest and biggest music festivals: MDL Beast.
Seeing J. Balvin, David Guetta and Steve Aoki in Saudi Arabia might have been a dream little over a year ago, but MDL Beast is making it reality. The EDM superstars join a roster that includes DJs Black Coffee, Tiesto, Martin Garrix and R3hab, along with 24 regional acts and 18 headliners.
One of the most anticipated acts is Colombian superstar J. Balvin, who was behind the hit ‘Blanco’. And Saudi’s first electronic DJ, Cosmicat is also due to perform, along with DJ duo, Dish Dash.
The festival is the first of its kind in Saudi Arabia, with an expected attendance of over 70,000 people.
When asked about what it feels like to be part of this historic moment for Saudi, Steve Aoki said “When I was invited to the MDL Beast Festival in Riyadh, I was thrilled that this festival would be in the KSA, it will be a great event with lots of works and lots of new names, and we can’t wait to be a part of this exceptional experience.”