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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: The start of Diriyah Season’s festivities was marked by a music celebration in Riyadh on Tuesday, featuring compelling performances by some of Saudi Arabia’s leading singers and dancers in the Kingdom’s birthplace.
Diriyah Gate Development Authority CEO Jerry Inzerillo said: “This celebrates who we are, it’s our heart, it’s our soul.”
“From now for the next 90 days there will be big epic concerts, but the concerts will celebrate Saudi culture, Saudi music. We love the other (seasons), Riyadh Season, Jeddah Season, Taif Season — we love them but ours (Diriyah Season) is about celebrating who we are,” Inzerillo told Arab News.
Before the concert began, Inzerillo took to the stage to thank King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
“If it wasn’t for him (King Salman), we wouldn’t have At-Turaif, we wouldn’t have Diriyah, your majesty we love you so much.”
Inzerillo also expressed his gratitude to the “dynamic” crown prince.
The festivities began with a traditional Ardah dance followed by performances by Saudi Arabia artists Rabeh Saqer and Ayed at Mayadeen concert hall.
Opening the show, Ayed said he was happy to perform at the event alongside Saqer.
The music had concertgoers on their feet throughout the event.
At the pre-concert press conference, Inzerillo had urged citizens to travel to “their home” and birthplace of the Kingdom, to experience Saudi Arabia’s rich history and heritage.
Inzerillo said Diriyah would allow visitors to experience “hundreds of events that celebrate Saudi music, dance, food, poetry, storytelling.”
“Everybody should come we will have five different zones, it’s going to be so much fun for everybody including families,” he said.
A feature of the season is the “Layali Diriyah” or “Diriyah Nights” that would allow visitors to experience the nation’s culture on local heritage farms.
In addition, there is an escape room titled “Journey to the Future” that will see participants tested on their knowledge of the Kingdom’s history.
Diriyah Season will take place until March 2024, with over a million visits expected.
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