January concerts and events in the UAE, from Sir Tom Jones to Blackpink

Musical performances, ballet premieres and ice-skating extravaganzas are only a few of the biggest shows on the agenda this month

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January can often be seen as a quiet month, full of strict New Year's resolutions and frugal living, but for those looking to beat post-holiday blues, there's plenty on the agenda across the UAE this month.

Here are some of the biggest events taking place in the next four weeks.

Great Gala Night with Sir Tom Jones – January 6 at Burj Al Arab, Dubai

The great Welsh crooner will be bringing his soothing baritone vocals to one of the world's most famous hotels, to perform one night only at Burj Al Arab's outdoor Marina Garden.

For the special showcase, the veteran artist will perform some of his greatest hits from his 50-year career, as well as new releases.

Guests will arrive on the red carpet and there will also be a reception and four-course feast before the concert.

From 7.30pm; from Dh3,500; dubai.platinumlist.net

An Evening with Russell Kane – January 6 at Theatre by QE2, Dubai

Comedian Russell Kane at the Dave's Edinburgh Comedy Awards at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. PA Wire

The award-winning British comic, known for hosting Live at the Electric and for regular appearances on popular UK TV shows Live at the Apollo, Celebrity Juice and I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! NOW! is heading back to Dubai after performing at Dubai Opera last year.

He sells out comedy shows, has a published novel, directed and starred in plays, appeared in a movie and made history when he became the first comedian to win both the Edinburgh Comedy Award and Melbourne International Comedy Festival's Barry Award in the same year.

From 9pm; from Dh150; dubai.platinumlist.net

Sleeping Beauty: Legend of Two Kingdoms – January 6-7 at Coca-Cola Arena, Dubai

This magical fairy tale is being portrayed through a theatrical ice show complete with special effects and glorious costumes at Dubai's Coca-Cola Arena. World-famous performers Tatiana Navka and Alina Zagitova are joined by figure-skating champion Petr Chernyshev and a cast of award-winning athletes, to bring to tale to life.

From 7.30pm; from Dh156; coca-cola-arena.com

A Thousand Tales – January 6-7 at Dubai Opera

This ballet performance will have its premiere at Dubai Opera this month, transporting viewers to a world of fairy tale heroes, from Sleeping Beauty to Puss in Boots and Aladdin, inspired by piano concerts From My Bookshelf, Childhood Memories and Travel Notebook by American composer Alexey Shor.

Principal dancers from European dance theatres will be led by choreographer Francesco Ventriglia and perform on a stage and in costumes designed by Roberta Guidi di Bagno.

From 8pm; from Dh430; dubaiopera.com

Jimmy Carr – January 7 at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi

British comedian Jimmy Carr is heading to Etihad Arena as part of his Terribly Funny 2.0 World Tour. Getty Images

One of Britain's favourite comedians is returning to Abu Dhabi. As part of his Terribly Funny 2.0 World Tour, Carr is heading to Etihad Arena on Yas Island for a one-off performance on Saturday.

Carr, 49, is known for his near-the-knuckle one-liners delivered in a deadpan manner. Last year, he released the controversial Netflix special Jimmy Carr: His Dark Material.

Doors open at 8pm; from D195; etihadarena.ae

Junk Kouture World Final – January 11 at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi

Founded in 2010, the event has been encouraging one billion children worldwide, aged 13 to 18, to harness their creativity using nothing but the rubbish around them.

Now, as part of this ambitious plan, Junk Kouture will showcase the best international designs from across the world in a high-octane fashion show.

Doors open 7pm; from Dh100; etihadarena.ae

Cirque du Soleil: Ovo – January 12-18 at Coca-Cola Arena, Dubai

Spectacular acrobatics set to a colourful backdrop is what spectators can expect from the 10 shows of Ovo by Cirque du Soleil across seven days.

Creator and director Deborah Colker used insects as her inspiration for the famed family-friendly touring circus show, featuring everything from foot juggling with ants to hand balancing with a dragonfly.

From 8pm; from Dh116; coca-cola-arena.com

Mind2Mind – January 13, 14 and 20 at Theatre by QE2, Dubai

James and Marina, a couple who live in Dubai, have created an impressive mentalism show that's been featured on America's Got Talent and won the golden buzzer on Ukraine's Got Talent.

Witness the act that received rave reviews from Simon Cowell for yourself this month aboard the QE2.

From 8pm; from Dh120; dubai.platinumlist.net

Havasi Drum & Piano Concert Show – January 14 at Dubai Opera

Popular European artist Havasi — full name Balazs Havasi — is renowned for spectacular performances fusing classical music and rock with a blinding light show.

Such an approach has made him a global drawcard, with the pianist and composer performing sell-out shows in New York's Carnegie Hall, Barbican Centre in London and the Sydney Opera House.

Doors open at 8pm; tickets from Dh230; dubaiopera.com

Rebeca Omordia's piano recital, African Pianism – January 20 at Cultural Foundation, Abu Dhabi

The award-winning Nigerian-Romanian pianist Rebeca Omordia, who lives in London, is set to deliver an electric performance of contemporary and dynamic classical music of composers from all over the African continent.

Showtime is 8pm; from D50; etihadarena.ae; ticketmaster.ae

Kevin Bridges – January 21 at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi

The hilarious Scot returns to the UAE as part of his world tour The Overdue Catch-Up.

He will be back in Abu Dhabi with his sell-out show. Fans should be quick off the mark as almost all of the dates along his seven-month journey around the UK are fully booked.

With four stand-up comedy specials to his name, including 2018's The Brand New Tour, Bridges is also a repeat guest on British TV shows such as Would I Lie to You? and Have I Got News for You.

Doors open at 7pm; from D195; etihadarena.ae

Amr Diab White Party – January 21 at Media City Amphitheatre, Dubai

One of Egypt's most famous exports, the five-time platinum artist Amr Diab, is taking to the stage for a special White Party at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre.

Expect to hear the award-winning star's chart-topping tunes, such as Tamally Maak, over the course of the night.

From 7.30pm; from Dh295; 800tickets.com

Joanne McNally – January 26-28 at Theatre by QE2, Dubai

Two of the Irish comic's trio of shows have sold out and she will return to Dubai for an encore performance in April, too.

McNally is known for her popular podcast My Therapist Ghosted Me, which she co-hosts with presenter Vogue Williams.

The podcast consistently has more than one million downloads each week. A UK television regular, she has appeared on a host of shows, including The Jonathan Ross Show, Michael McIntyre’s The Wheel and Channel 4’s The Big Fat Quiz of Everything.

She has been described by The Sunday Times as a "truly gifted stand-up".

Doors open at 7pm; tickets from Dh250; ticketmaster.ae

Imagine Dragons – January 26 at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi

Catch American rock band Imagine Dragons in Abu Dhabi this month. AFP

The American rock band will return to the UAE as part of their latest world tour celebrating the release of their double-disc compilation album Mercury — Acts 1 & 2.

Executive produced by the legendary Rick Rubin, the 32-track album represents the band’s broadest and most personal collection yet. Bringing together their two most recent albums, it features the hit singles Enemy, Bones and Sharks.

Tickets go on sale on October 7 at 12 pm and start from AED 250, at livenation.me

Hans Zimmer Live – January 27 at Coca-Cola Arena, Dubai

German musician Hans Zimmer, one of the world's most celebrated composers, is set to perform his first concert in the Middle East at Dubai's Coca-Cola Arena.

Hans Zimmer Live will feature some of the composer's greatest hits, from his Oscar-winning score for The Lion King, to the music of films such as Gladiator, Inception, The Dark Knight, Pirates of the Caribbean and, most recently, Dune.

Zimmer will be accompanied by a large orchestra for the two-and-a-half-hour show, which will also feature a live band as well as dancers.

From 9pm; from Dh295; coca-cola-arena.com

Sting – January 27 at Etihad Arena, Abu Dhabi

Sting will bring his My Songs tour to Abu Dhabi.

The former Police frontman will perform his greatest hits from a celebrated back catalogue that has won him 17 Grammy Awards, three Brit Awards, a Golden Globe and an Emmy. He has also been nominated four times for the Best Original Song Oscar.

Tracks for fans to listen out for are Roxanne, Every Breath You Take and Desert Rose.

A global hit in 1999, Desert Rose is a collaboration with Algerian singer Cheb Mami that exposed the world to the Arabic folk music genre rai.

Doors open 7pm; from Dh435 at etihadarena.ae

Svetlana Zakharova – January 27-28 at Dubai Opera

Bolshoi prima Svetlana Zakharova, an internationally renowned ballerina, will perform in a double-bill ballet called Modanse.

She's joined by a cast of well-known dancers from the Bolshoi Theatre, as well as modern dance star Ildar Young-Gainutdinov.

The first part of the performance is Baroque-inspired Come un Respiro (Like a Breath), created for Zakharova by Italian choreographer Mauro Bigonzetti, with music formed by pieces by George Frideric Handel.

The second bill features a tribute to Coco Chanel, called Gabrielle Chanel, which features more than 80 costumes.

From 8pm; from Dh349; dubaiopera.com

Blackpink – January 28 at Etihad Park, Abu Dhabi

Blackpink are coming to Etihad Park.

The popular K-pop girl group, made up of Jisoo, Jennie, Rose and Lisa, announced in August they would be bringing their Born Pink world tour to Abu Dhabi on January 28.

The group's second album, Born Pink, which came out last year, reached No 1 on the UK Albums Chart and Billboard 200. It marked the first time a Korean girl group had ever topped the Billboard 200, with Blackpink becoming the first female group to do so since Danity Kane in 2008. In less than two days, Born Pink sold more than 2.2 million copies, becoming the bestselling album by a girl group in South Korea.

From 8pm; from Dh350; ticketmaster.ae

Dubai Shopping Festival – Until January 29 at various venues

Concerts, shopping deals and various activities, including night markets and light installations, are available throughout Dubai for this six-week festival, which wraps at the end of this month.

Expect fireworks and drone shows aplenty as the annual event comes to a close. More details on the closing ceremony are yet to be revealed.

More information is available at visitdubai.com

Updated: January 03, 2023, 3:00 AM