AR Rahman’s Firdaus Orchestra to debut at Expo 2020 with tribute to space explorers

The hour-long performance on Saturday will close Space Week at world's fair

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The all-women Firdaus Orchestra will be making its stellar debut performance at Expo 2020 Dubai with a tribute to space explorers.

Closing out Expo's Space Week, the ensemble, led by AR Rahman, will delight listeners on October 23 with a space-themed repertoire comprising western classical music and an original composition by Mr Rahman.

The concert will begin at 7pm on Saturday at Expo's Jubilee Park, and will be led by conductor Yasmina Sabbah. The evening will give visitors a taste of musical talent from across the Arab region.

Lasting one hour, the orchestra's inaugural performance will include Also Sprach Zarathustra, the theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey, as well as music from Star Wars and E.T. – Adventures on Earth.

It will also feature Karl Jenkins’ Palladio, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 and a grand finale performance by AR Rahman, who will present an exclusive new composition, Humanitas-Proorismós-Al Amal – an ode by the composer to explorers of space.

‘Al amal’ is the Arabic word for ‘hope’, which is also the name of the first Arab mission to Mars.

“To know the unknown is the quest of life, and by exploring space we explore ourselves," said Mr Rahman.

Music fans hoping for a seat in the park are encouraged to arrive early as capacity is limited.

Expo 2020 Dubai's Space Week began on October 17 and has hosted astronauts, experts and leaders in the field, highlighting the latest technology in space research and travel.

Tickets for the world's fair are available at

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Updated: October 22, 2021, 11:05 AM