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  • Celebrities at Expo 2020 Dubai: from Bryan Cranston to Leo Messi – The National

 January 5

by Carolina

Expo 2020 Dubai has kicked off, and a number of celebrities have made their way to the world’s greatest show.

From athletes to actors and singers to royalty, here are some of the famous faces that have been spotted at the world’s fair since its opening ceremony on September 30:

G V Prakash Kumar

The Indian composer and actor took a visit to the Expo 2020 on January 3. He uploaded a video to his Instagram account showing off the India Pavilion, and later posted some comments about it. In a Twitter video, he also praised the pavilion, saying: “I feel very happy to be present here at the India Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai which showcases India’s strengths and achievements brilliantly.”

Armin van Buuren

The popular Dutch DJ performed a special New Year’s set at Expo. Performing as part of a 13-hour concert event, he took to the stage at 1.30am, helping usher in 2022. Ahead of the gig, he said he was excited for it and called it a “great way to end this year”.

Dimitri Vegas

The Belgian DJ was the other big name who helped welcome 2022 at Expo. He uploaded a video showing him counting down with the crowd, before celebrating the New Year with streamers and pyrotechnics going off to a cheering crowd at Al Wasl Plaza.

Lea Salonga

The Filipino singing sensation performed at Expo on Christmas Day. Known as the voice of Princess Jasmine in A Whole New World from the Disney classic Aladdin, she shared the stage with singer and pianist Joe Stilgoe as well as the London Community Gospel Choir.

Tamer Hosny

The Egyptian singer took to the stage for a performance of his biggest hits on December 23. Afterwards, he shared a post of appreciation on Instagram, writing that he felt “immense pride” in the concert and thanking the audience as well as the Arab community that attended. He also praised the organisers and those responsible for putting on the show.

AR Rahman

No stranger to the UAE, the Oscar-winning composer returned to Expo for a performance with other Indian stars on December 23. The concert, which took place at Jubilee Park, was his first in almost two years and featured some of his most beloved compositions. Ahead of the event, he also took to Instagram on December 21 to share a video of himself at Expo, exploring the pavilions.

Lionel Messi

Footballer Lionel Messi poses with schoolchildren in front of the Surreal water feature at Expo 2020 Dubai. All photos: Expo 2020 Dubai

The Paris Saint-German star made a surprise visit to Expo Dubai 2020 on December 13. Messi, who recently clinched a record-breaking seventh Ballon d’Or award, carried a football during the trip as he posed near Expo’s popular waterfall attraction. He also met with Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, and Noura Al Kaabi, Minister of Culture and Youth, during his tour.

Luis Figo

The former Barcelona star was at Expo for Mastercard’s Priceless Surprises that took place at the Mastercard Cube on December 13. Now retired, he was briefly reunited with the UEFA Champions League Cup, which was on display at the event.

Alicia Keys

The Fallin’ hitmaker debuted her new album Keys during a concert for Expo’s Infinite Nights series on December 10. Taking to Al Wasl Plaza, her performance featured songs both old and new. After the gig, she wrote: “Launching it in Dubai was incredible!!!!! But better than everything is the LOVE!! The love is REAL!! We are LOCKED In!!!”

Atif Aslam

The Pakistani singer headlined a concert on November 17 at the Expo’s Jubilee Stage. He brought along a mix of his biggest hits from Pakistan, Bollywood as well as his Coke Studio performances. Ahead of the gig, he wrote that he was “super excited” to see everyone.

Nadine Labaki

The Bafta-nominated Lebanese actress and director was at Expo to give a talk at Women’s Pavilion where she showed her short film Women of Wonder on November 17. Shown to visitors as they arrived at the pavilion, the film uses a child’s perspective to shed light on gender inequality.

Bryan Cranston

Actor Bryan Cranston at the Mexico Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai. Suneesh Sudhakaran / Expo 2020 Dubai

The actor was seen at Expo 2020 Dubai visiting the Mexican Pavilion on November 15. He has also been spotted at other hot spots in the emirate promoting his new beverage brand with his Breaking Bad co-star Aaron Paul.

Pep Guardiola

Manchester City manager, Pep Guardiola speaks to young footballers at Expo 2020 Dubai on Monday, November 15, 2021. Photo: Expo 2020 Dubai / City Football Group

The Manchester City coach surprised football fans with a visit to the Expo on November 15. He made stops at the UAE Pavilion, where he learnt more about the traditions and culture of the country, and the UK Pavilion, before hosting a Q&A session with invited guests.

Usain Bolt

Multi-award-winning athlete Usain Bolt took part in a 1.45-kilometre family fun run at Expo 2020 Dubai on Saturday, November 13. All photos: Victor Besa / The National

The world-famous athlete was at the world’s fair as part of a partnership between Bolt, Gatorade and Expo 2020 Dubai’s Sports, Fitness and Wellbeing Hub. He led a 1.45-kilometre family run to raise funds for Al Noor Rehabilitation and Welfare Association for People of Determination on November 13.

Prince Albert of Monaco

We were honoured by the visit of His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco to Expo 2020 Dubai today, as we celebrated Monaco’s National Day in a special ceremony, which was followed by visits to the pavilions of Monaco and the UAE, pic.twitter.com/3dy6Nb2aLR

— Expo 2020 Dubai (@expo2020dubai) November 13, 2021

Prince Albert visited Expo 2020 Dubai to mark Monaco’s country day by getting a tour around the site as well as giving a speech at the Monaco Pavilion on November 13.

Highlight and Punch

K-pop band Highlight perform at Kite: K-pop in the Emirates 2021 concert at Jubilee Stage, Expo 2020 Dubai. Photos: Victor Besa / The National, Expo 2020 Dubai

The K-pop band boy band took to the Jubilee Stage to perform live as part of the Kite: K-pop in the Emirates 2021 concert on November 12. Joining them virtually were fellow groups BTOB, Luminous and Laboum. Punch, known as the “K-drama soundtrack queen” in the UAE, also performed live.

Nancy Ajram

The Lebanese singer performed at Expo 2020 as part of the Infinite Nights concert series on November 12. The show took place live from Al Wasl Plaza but was streamed to a global audience. “Dubai… you’ve been #Magical, can’t wait to see you again!” she tweeted.

Ragheb Alama

Alama performed along with Ajram. He shared photos from the event on his Instagram and wrote that the crowd left him speechless. “A magical evening. Thank you all for being there and a special thank you to everyone that took part in organising such a breathtaking event,” he wrote.

Deepika Padukone

We are excited by the visit of the Bollywood star, @deepikapadukone to Expo 2020 Dubai last week.

The celebrity enjoyed a tour around Expo 2020 Dubai’s site. She visited a number of pavilions on her visit. Here are some photos from her visit to the United Arab Emirates pavilion. pic.twitter.com/BUAmg7UfTT

— Expo 2020 Dubai (@expo2020dubai) November 11, 2021

The Bollywood actress was spotted at a number of pavilions during her visit on November 11. The official Expo 2020 Dubai account shared photos of the star inside the UAE Pavilion, where she was also given a tour of the site.

Amr Diab

The Egyptian superstar took to the stage at Expo 2020 Dubai on October 30 as part of Egypt’s country day. “What a night, it was good to see you all for Egypt’s Expo 2020 National Day celebrations,” he posted on Instagram.

Vanessa Kirby

The Crown actress stopped by Expo 2020 Dubai for the opening of the Women’s Pavilion, in collaboration with Cartier, on October 27. The Bafta-winning star wore a sleek black lace-trimmed suit for the occasion, sharing a photo with her 1.7 million Instagram followers.

Ali Zafar

The Pakistani singer-songwriter was at Expo 2020 on October 24, to perform as part of The Land of Melodies with Ali Zafar, a celebration of the friendship between Pakistan and the UAE.

He also took to Instagram to share a photo of himself outside the Pakistan Pavilion. “Felt proud of Pakistan’s highly professional and visually sublime representation at the Dubai Expo 2021,” he wrote in the caption.

Kadim Al Sahir

The Iraqi star headlined the first Infinite Nights concert on October 15. Nicknamed “the Caesar of Arabic songs” and “Iraq’s ambassador to the world”, Al Sahir also shared a photo from backstage rehearsals ahead of his gig.

Mikel Arteta

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is welcomed by Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed, chairman and chief executive of Emirates Airline and Group. All photos: Emirates

Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta took a trip to the Emirates airline pavilion on October 11. His visit also included stops at the Spanish and Argentinian pavilions, the Sustainability Pavilion, Al Wasl Dome and the popular Garden in the Sky observation tower for a 360-degree view of the site.

Nomzamo Mbatha and Zozibini Tunzi

South African actress Nomzamo Mbatha made an appearance at Expo 2020 Dubai as part of Celebrating SA’s Global Icons: Women Category, alongside former Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi, on October 7.

“Our pavilion here in Dubai was great because it’s about knowing that we have an equal footing and that we earned our place to be in the international market,” Mbatha told The National. “I came here to meet my international peers and it is through those conversations that our industry will grow.”

Andrea Bocelli

The Italian tenor shared a photo of himself taken with his fellow performers from the September 30 opening ceremony on Instagram, as part of a gallery that also showcased Al Wasl Plaza.

Lang Lang

Chinese pianist Lang Lang posted a behind-the-scenes photo of himself standing in a circle with all his fellow performers from the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai. It was shared by Hussain Al Jassmi, Angelique Kidjo and Mayssa Karaa, who also took to the stage on the evening.

Lang called it “a beautiful event” while also sharing photos of the opening ceremony itself.

Khaled Alkhaledi

Saudi Arabian actor Khaled Alkhaledi posted to his Instagram where he is seen in a video with Dubai TV host Abdullah Ismail on September 30.

“I have waited so long to come here. Where are we?” he asks Ismail.

“We are the Expo 2020 opening ceremony, the exclusive launch for media, social media influencers, and celebrities,” says Ismail. “Your presence, Khaled, has brightened the UAE and Expo altogether.”

“The UAE has been working on Expo for seven years, day and night. This is our Emirates, a nation that contains kindness, and warmth,” says Alkhaledi.

Noha Nabil

Kuwait influencer Noha Nabil shared a photo of herself at the opening ceremony on September 30, writing that “Dubai dazzled the world today with the launch of the #Expo2020, which exceeded all expectations”.

Expo 2020 Dubai runs until Thursday, March 31. With 192 country pavilions, as well as themed exhibitions at the Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability Pavilions, 200 dining venues and up to 60 shows a day, the event is expected to attract more than 25 million visitors.

Day tickets, multi-day passes and season passes for those aged 18 to 59 can all be bought from the Expo 2020 Dubai online ticket office.

Scroll through our gallery below to see more from Expo 2020 Dubai’s opening day:

Visitors enjoy a light show at Al Wasl Plaza, Expo 2020 Dubai. Victor Besa / The National

Updated: January 5th 2022, 3:09 AM

Original posted at www.thenationalnews.com

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