Aside from the 3,000-strong audience inside Al Wasl Plaza, millions across the globe tuned in to virtually view the eagerly awaited event. With the golden ring of connectivity – the inspiration for the Expo 2020 Dubai logo – raised to the trellis of the magnificent Al Wasl Plaza, the beating heart of the Expo site and the spectacular setting for the captivating ceremony, the most inclusive World Expo ever was officially underway.
In addition to music from some of the most influential artists on the planet and a beautiful live orchestra, a sensory overload of powerful visuals was beamed across Al Wasl Plaza’s dome, the world’s largest 360-degree projection screen. More than 3,000 lighting fixtures, 1,000 speakers, 1,300 costumes and buckets of passion and emotion from every one of the 1,000-plus participating performers and volunteers also contributed to a one-of-a-kind spectacle of masterful artistic collaboration.
His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, UAE Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence and Commissioner General of Expo 2020 Dubai, welcomed the world to Expo 2020 Dubai – and to the UAE – in his speech, saying: “Expo 2020 Dubai will provide a significant platform for all people to connect, discuss and work together. Together, we will convey, from the UAE to the world, on our 50th anniversary, a message of tolerance, coexistence and peace; a message of progress, prosperity and growth; a message of brotherhood, happiness and an unwavering will to create a brighter future for everyone.”
Dimitri S. Kerkentzes, Secretary General, Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), said: “All the world is coming together, for the first time since the pandemic began, to connect, to exchange and to learn on this extraordinary global stage. The time has now come to open Expo 2020 Dubai, an Expo that marks the era, that plays a defining role in the global recovery, and that contributes to a better future.”
The flags of Expo’s 192 participating nations, revealed via a domino effect as flags were opened one by one, was a proud and visually stunning moment that also signified a reawakening of the world.
It was celebrated tenor Andrea Bocelli who brought the house down, rounding off the night’s electrifying proceedings with one of his all-time classics, The Prayer, its lyrics of human connection crescendoing into the grand finale.
With more than 80 million albums under his belt, classical music's biggest-selling living artist said that performing at Expo 2020 was a “great honour” and that his presence at Al Wasl “reflects all of the affection my audience has been giving me for many years and I hope to give it back”.
Andrea Bocelli said: “We have all gone through a year that no one could ever have imagined. For a year, we have lost the essentials, our freedom in and, in a sense, and even our dignity. Now we finally see the light and I hope that this event will also help to instil in everyone a sense of optimism, a desire to achieve and to put what has been behind us.”
Before that, chart-topping British vocalist Ellie Goulding belted out a resounding, uplifting version of Anything Can Happen; Andra Day enraptured the audience with Rise Up; Chinese concert pianist Lang Lang wowed with his wizardry; and four-time Grammy winning singer-songwriter Angelique Kidjo, together with renowned Saudi singer Mohammed Abdu, sang John Legend’s powerful If You’re Out There?, with its moving lyrics imploring the world to join together.
Other highlights included the official Expo song, This Is Our Time, sung by Arab artists Hussain Al Jassmi, Almas and Mayssa Karaa, while Emirati singing sensation Ahlam Alshamsi completed the formidable regional line-up. The artistic prowess of Oscar-winning composer A.R. Rahman’s all-women ensemble, the Firdaus Orchestra, comprising 50 musicians from across the Arab world, also proved a pivotal part of the ceremony’s inspiring journey.
Scott Givens, Executive Producer, Expo 2020 Opening Ceremony, who co-curated and co-produced the show with Franco Dragone, Artistic Director, said: “We picked artists that had songs that belonged in the ceremony and that tied in with Expo’s themes.
“Of course, we wanted to represent the world, we wanted to be plural and we wanted to reflect the diversity of our planet. I'm very proud of the combination of talent that we've brought together to do this and the way they've executed the story.”
A feeling of warmth, respect, togetherness and camaraderie was palpable throughout the celebration, which also demonstrated that the world is primed and ready to re-embrace live events. The stage is now set for Expo 2020 Dubai to host the biggest cultural gathering in the world, presenting a visually striking and emotionally inspiring 182 days, as more than 200 participants – including nations, multilateral organisations, businesses, and educational institutions, as well as millions of visitors – create the largest and most diverse World Expo ever.
Founded in Dubai/UAE, SCLG is a membership driven industry business group with 200+ corporate members. SCLG is expanding internationally to continuously enhance its global foot-print.
Managing supply chain and logistics more effectively shall contribute to positive growth of economy in range of 3% to 5% (GDP terms).
Impact of climate change on managing supply chain should be on agenda of all supply chain professionals.
Oil and Gas industry should enlarge its theme to manage supply chains of larger energy domain.
Reduction in current level of wastage in food supply chain shall help mitigate poverty.
Managing Fresh water supply chain needs attention of all.
Sophisticated demand forecast and planning for sure helps improve efficiency of supply chain.
Dubai Lease Conference , Dubai 15th -16th November 2023
Transport Logistic Southeast Asia , Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore 01st -03rd November 2023
Supply Chain Logistics Kenya , Nairobi, Kenya 17th -19th August 2023
South East Asia Digital Supply Chain Summit 2023 , Vietnam 22nd June 2023
45th Annual SAPICS Conference , Century City Conference Centre, Cape Town, South Africa 11th -14th June 2023
The 4th Indonesia International Transport, Logistics, Equipment & Services Exhibition 2023 , JIExpo Kemayoran, Jakarta, Indonesia 24th -26th May 2023
Supply Chain Digitalization Conference 2023 , Virtual Event 24th -25th May 2023
Mauritius Maritime Week 2022 , The Ravenala Attitude, Mauritius 13th -15th December 2022
Annual GPCA Forum , Hilton Riyadh Hotel & Residences, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia 06th -08th December 2022
Intermodal Africa , Hotel Sarakawa, Lomé, Togo 22nd -24th November 2022
Seamless Saudi Arabia , Riyadh International Convention & Exhibition Centre 02nd -03rd November 2022
DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION CONFERENCE , Virtual Event 01st -02nd November 2022
Asean Ports & Shipping , InterContinental Saigon, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 25th -27th October 2022
World Breakbulk Expo , Shanghai, China 25th -26th October 2022
Indonesia International Transport, Logistic, Equipment & Service Exhibition , Jakarta, Indonesia 05th -07th October 2022
Supply Chain Digitization 2022 , Virtual Event 17th -18th October 2022
Malta Maritime Summit , Malta Marriott Hotel & Spa in St. Julian’s, Malta 03rd -07th October 2022
IATA World Cargo Symposium , London, England 27th -29th September 2022
Baltic & Black Sea Ports & Shipping , Vanagupe Hotel Conference and Spa Center, Palanga, Lithuania 27th -29th May 2022
7th GPCA Research and Innovation Conference , Address Sky View Hotel, Dubai 26th -27th September 2022
Seamless North Africa , Cairo, Egypt 20th -21st September 2022
China (Shenzhen) International Logistics and Supply Chain Fair (CILF) , Shenzhen, China 22nd -24th September 2022
Transport Logistic and Air Cargo Southeast Asia , Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre, Sungapore 13th -15th September 2022
BIMP-EAGA 2022 , Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia 02nd -04th August 2022
Intermodal Africa , King Fahd Palace Hotel Dakar, Senegal 28th -30th June 2022
Philippine Ports and Shipping , Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila, The Philippines 21st -23rd June 2022
44th Annual SAPICS 2022 In-Person Conference & Exhibition , Capetown, South Africa 12th -15th June 2022
Trans Middle East , Radisson Blu Hotel, Manama, Bahrain 31st -02nd June 2022
Seamless Middle East , Dubai World Trade Centre 31st -01st June 2022
Digital Sypply Chain Show , Address Hotel, Dubai Marina, Dubai 25th May 2022
Mediterranean Ports and Shipping , Hoteli Bernardin Portorož, Slovenia 24th -26th May 2022
Airport Show , DWTC, Dubai 17th -19th May 2022
13th GPCA Supply-Chain Conference , Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City Dubai UAE 17th -19th May 2022