Dubai Opera

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Dubai Opera
Former names Dubai Opera House
General information
Type Multi-format venue
Classification Arts complex
Location Downtown Dubai
Country United Arab Emirates
Coordinates 25°11′44.2″N 55°16′18.8″E / 25.195611°N 55.271889°E / 25.195611; 55.271889Coordinates: 25°11′44.2″N 55°16′18.8″E / 25.195611°N 55.271889°E / 25.195611; 55.271889
Construction started April 2013
Completed August 2016
Opened 31 August 2016
Technical details
Size 60,000 square metre
Design and construction
Architect Janus Rostock
Architecture firm Atkins
Developer Emaar Properties
Engineer Atkins
Structural engineer Atkins
Services engineer ThyssenKrupp (Stage engineering and systems)
BK Gulf (MEP contractor)
LSI Projects (Audio & Lighting Systems)
Other designers Mirage Leisure and Development (Development and Project Managers)
Theatre Projects (Theatre consultant)
MLC International (Cost consultant) Sandy Brown Associates (Acoustic Consultant), neolight global limited (lighting designers)
Main contractor Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC)
Other information
Seating capacity 2,000
Dubai Opera homepage

Dubai Opera is a 2,000-seat, multi-format, performing arts centre, which is located within The Opera District in Downtown Dubai. It was developed by Emaar Properties to host a variety of performances and events including theatre, opera, ballet, concerts, conferences and exhibitions. Its plans were announced by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum in March 2012 and it was completed in 2016.[1] It opened on 31 August 2016 with a performance by Plácido Domingo.[2]


Dubai Opera is part of The Opera District within Downtown Dubai. The 1901-seat performing arts centre was designed by Janus Rostock of Atkins.[3] The theatre was conceived and briefed by Theatre Projects Consultants,[4] it can be converted into a traditional theatre, concert hall, banquet hall or exhibition space. Using hydraulic lifts and seating wagons to relocate 900 of the 2,000 seats, the space can be used for other events while the extra seating is stored in garages beneath the theatre.[5]

Dubai Opera is designed to resemble a dhow, a traditional sailing vessel, in which the 'bow' of the structure houses the opera's main stage, orchestra and seating, while the elongated 'hull' has waiting areas, taxi drop-off areas, and parking.[6][7]

In January 2015, Emaar named Jasper Hope as the Chief Executive of Dubai Opera. Hope was the COO of London's Royal Albert Hall.[8] Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC) was the main contractor for the development, having worked with Emaar in building the Dubai Mall.[9]

An earlier proposal to build a cultural centre on an island in the Dubai Creek designed by architect Zaha Hadid was announced in 2008 and shelved during the property crash in Dubai.[5] This venue, located in The Lagoons, would have accommodated an opera house with a 2,500 seating capacity, an 800-seat playhouse, a 5,000-square-metre (54,000 sq ft) arts gallery, a performing arts school, and a '6-star' themed hotel.[10]

Other structures[edit]

The Opera District was launched by Emaar Properties in Downtown Dubai in 2013. Aside from Dubai Opera, the district, which faces Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Fountain, includes art galleries, museums, design studios, and other cultural venues. The area includes several hotels, a retail plaza, recreational spaces and residential towers.[11][12]

Dubai has more than 50 art galleries and hosts cultural events such as Dubai Design Week, Art Dubai, and the SIKKA Art Fair.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Dubai Opera House builder eyes 2016 completion date". Elan Magazine. June 11, 2014. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Placido Domingo opens Dubai Opera". 
  3. ^ </ "Top 40 most powerful architects in the Middle East". Arabian Business Magazine. Retrieved April 24, 2016. 
  4. ^ "Projects - Theatre Projects". Retrieved 2016-08-26. 
  5. ^ a b Lucy Barnard (October 10, 2013). "Emaar's opera house project in Dubai will be a multi-purpose facility". The National. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  6. ^ Aarti Nagraj (March 18, 2014). "Emaar Reveals Details About 2,000-Seat Opera House In Dubai". Gulf Business. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  7. ^ "Dubai to get 2,000-seat opera house in The Opera District". Khaleej Times. March 19, 2014. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Emaar names Jasper Hope CEO of Dubai Opera". Emirates 24/7. February 11, 2015. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  9. ^ James Henderson (June 10, 2014). "Dubai Opera House to be finished in two years". Construction Week Online. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Dubai Opera House by Zaha Hadid". 2008-06-06. Retrieved 2015-04-17. 
  11. ^ Trenwith, Courtney (5 May 2014). "Dubai's Emaar launches first residences in The Opera District". Arabian Business. Retrieved 12 March 2015. 
  12. ^ "Emaar unveils BLVD Heights in Downtown Dubai". Khaleej Times. 10 September 2014. Retrieved 12 March 2015. 
  13. ^ "Emaar announces opera house project for Dubai". Construction Week Online. 22 March 2012. Retrieved 12 March 2015. 

External link[edit]

Media related to Dubai Opera at Wikimedia Commons