Saudi EDM festival MDL Beast welcomes thousands in its opening night - in pictures

The event features a dream line up of dance acts including Martin Garrix, David Guetta and Steve Aioki

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The region’s biggest dance music festival is under way in Saudi Arabia.

Running until Saturday, December 21 in Riyadh, MDL Beast Fest’s opening night saw more than 60,000 people partying to the sounds of some of the world’s leading DJs.

Headlining the first day was a string of electronic dance music stars (EDM) such as Dutchmen Martin Garrix and Tiesto, as well as South Africa’s Black Coffee. They were supported by Cosmicat, who organisers described as the first female DJ from Saudi Arabia.

Spanning five stages in the heart of the Kingdom’s capital, over two dozen DJs is set to take the decks over the next two days.

Leading the bill tonight on the main stage are popular DJs David Guetta and Steve Aioki, both of whom will perform an anticipated joint set. They will be joined Spanish reggaeton star J Balvin. Meanwhile, the two Underground Beast stages will showcase Saudi Arabia's EDM scene with sets by locals Baloo, Varoo and Vinyl Mode.

The latter, real name Mohannad Nassar, is particularly looking forward to represent his country's burgeoning scene in the biggest gig of his career.

The local talents are like a time-bomb,” he states. “They are so talented, they have so much inside them, and they are just ready to pop.”

MDL Beast Fest runs until Saturday, December 21. The purpose-built venue is located opposite the Durrat Al Riyadh Resort & Spa, Banban, at King Fahd Road, Exit 6, Durrat, Riyadh. Tickets begin from SAR 150 (Dh140) for a one-day pass to SAR 300 (Dh293) for a three-day pass. The prices then increase to include platinum and VIP packages. More information is available on


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