DUBAI DESERT ROCK FESTIVAL 2008: The Recap

Center Stage Management (CSM), celebrated Dubai Desert Rock Festival's fifth anniversary at Dubai Festival City on March 7 and March 8. Despite the late ticket sales, a total of 28,000 tickets were bought in four days.

KORN, MACHINE HEAD, KILLSWITCH ENAGE, AS I LAY DYING, NERVECELL and SLAPSHOCK performed on the first day and MUSE, VELVET REVOLVER, MARKY RAMONE, JULIANA DOWN and SPOON FEEDAS on the second.

THE GALEEJ GURUS, winners of Shamal Battle held at the same venue on the March 5, performed on both days on the same stage as these rock legends

This year, Jackie Wartanian (Managing Director) and Lara Teperdjian (Executive Vice-President) of Center Stage Management, blew their five candles to celebrate their ever growing event. Launched in April 2003, the event has grown to encompass nine international bands, two local bands, the Shamal winner (GALEEJ GURUS from Bangalore, India) over two days, the first suspended bar ever, an Infusion Dance Tent, a Calvin Klein Fragrances VIP Lounge, the Lee Cooper cable slide and numerous other entertainment options for the audience.

Jackie Wartanian, president of CSM, explains, "Desert Rock is still a baby festival compared to the ones in Europe for instance. But we're proud to have grown from a three hour show to a two-day festival. When we started we had great vision for the future with the aim to put Dubai Desert Rock Festival on the world music festival map and we have achieved that."

Ticket sales were delayed due to reasons beyond our control and only started on March 5 at 5pm, which engendered long queues in the official ticket outlets: Virgin Megastores and Plug Ins Electronics. 15,000 tickets were bought by the heavy metal fans for March 7 and 13,000 for March 8. Lara Teperdjian explains, "We attracted a large crowd by adding the Infusion Dance Tent and the suspended bar as a world premiere. It was great having KFC to satisfy the visitors' taste buds too!"

The free continuous bus shuttles were well used, and there was no traffic at the end of either day.

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