Feld returns on international tour to Abu Dhabi

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In another big step backwards to normalcy, Feld Entertainment has resumed its international tours with the September 2-11 broadcast of Disney on Ice’s production “Find Your Hero” at Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The troupe, made up of performers and production staff almost exclusively from Europe, is set to swing from October 28 to January 31. 2 via the United Kingdom, then to the Nordic countries and to the rest of the continent. It’s all in Disney on Ice’s traditional European calendar, but after a two-year hiatus, said Rob McHugh, senior vice president of international sales and business development for Feld Entertainment.

As with his U.S. Disney on Ice and Monster Jam units, Feld uses the safety protocols and procedures he developed before helping bring traditional live family entertainment back to the road a year ago.

“I watched with enthusiasm as our US team air shows both under COVID restrictions, and now, with most of the US at 100% capacity, with a few restrictions here and there. There has been a lot of learning from my side as well as the rest of the company, but the international has been a different struggle and a different challenge, ”said McHugh. “This event in Abu Dhabi, it has actually been canceled three times. We said, ‘We’re going, we’re not going.’ “

Rob McHugh, Senior Vice President of International Sales and Business Development for Feld Entertainment
Rob McHugh, Senior Vice President of International Sales and Business Development at Feld Entertainment

For the 13 limited capacity shows from September 2 to 11, Feld teamed up with a partner – SES Live, based in Dubai – with whom he worked for about five years in Doha, Qatar and Dubai (also part of the United Arab Emirates), but not in Abu Dhabi, McHugh said.

“The decision to primarily use staff based in the European Union was due to travel restrictions and the tour route related to COVID,” McHugh said in a follow-up email.

“We had challenges… trying to make this happen (amidst) travel restrictions, quarantines etc but in the long term working with the local government in Abu Dhabi and our partner , we were able to make it happen and we pulled it out, ”he said. “We had some difficulties during the rehearsals. We had to get some new ice coolers, but we were able to do the rehearsals. “

About 30,000 tickets were sold for the Abu Dhabi shows, a spokesperson for Feld said. This followed the expectations of McHugh, who said around 17,000 tickets were sold on the second day of the race.

Although the Etihad Arena, which was completed in March 2020 but only opened in January, has a capacity of 18,000, it has been reduced for “Find Your Hero” to 3,400 a show, as 6 feet have been kept between the pods which were sold in groups of two, four and six, said McHugh…

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