Musicians rally round to organise festival for Haiti in Dubai

Local musicians moved by the humanitarian crisis in Haiti will stage a benefit festival to raise money for victims in the Caribbean country.

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Local musicians moved by the humanitarian crisis in Haiti will stage a benefit festival in Dubai to help victims in the earthquake-devastated Caribbean country. The Irish Village club will host the relief concerts on January 28, with all proceeds going towards Médecins Sans Frontiers. Adrian Luckhurst, an Emirates pilot and bassist for the rock-covers band The Heat, said news coverage of the 7.0-magnitude quake and the ordeals of the 250,000 believed to be in need of urgent aid spurred him to action. About 200,000 people are believed to have died after the January 12 disaster, with another two million left homeless. "It all came up very quickly," said Mr Luckhurst, 44 and from the UK. "I was sitting up there in my [hotel] room and had lots of time to watch the Haiti thing. I thought, we've got a band and we have the opportunity to do something with it, and it's going to be quite something big." He expects a full house to the capacity 2,000 venue. Other acts confirmed so far include Tiger Lilli and the acoustic artist Mike Ross. Mr Luckhurst hoped the event would raise more than Dh70,000. Dave Cattanach, the food and beverage manager for the Aviation Club at the Irish Village, said cobbling together a concert in just eight days was a logistical challenge, but that about six bands and DJs had already agreed to perform for the good cause. Stage lights and sound equipment from a recent concert from the British Queen of Soul Beverley Knight would be reused for the benefit. "We talked to some sponsors and the sound and light company agreed to leave the stage stuff up, and we talked to the printers at Gulf Technical to do the tickets," he said. "All of these contacts basically agreed to give their time for nothing, so we're very thankful."

Doors for the concert on Thursday open around 7pm. Tickets are Dh30 and include a free beverage.