Award-winning actress and singer Lea Salonga, and internationally-acclaimed singer and pianist Joe Stilgoe enchanted fans with stunning performances in celebration of Christmas Day, on Expo 2020 Dubai’s Jubilee Stage tonight (25 December).
The evening kicked off with an extraordinary performance by singer-songwriter Stilgoe – recognized globally for his shows that combine both wit and style.
The musician was followed by Filipina singer Salonga, who had the audience dancing and singing along to musical theatre’s most popular songs as well as some of the world’s biggest hits.
Hundreds of visitors gathered around the Jubilee Stage to watch the superstar – known for starring as Kim in Miss Saigon and voicing two Disney Princesses: Princess Jasmine and Mulan.
The show marked Salonga’s first concert in front of a live audience since March 2020, when she performed at the Dubai Opera before the COVID-19 pandemic put a halt on concerts globally.
The singer expressed her gratitude to her fans for complying with face mask regulations and encouraged audience members to keep wearing their masks throughout the show.
She said: “Full disclosure, the last time I performed in front of an audience was here in Dubai. Did some of you all go to the Dubai Opera in March 2020? It was a time of uncertainity. Well, it still is, but I like to think that we have all been able to figure out how to move forward. I am looking out at this crowd and you all are wearing masks. I am so proud of you.”
The crowd sang along with the Tony award-winning star as she belted out ‘Let it Go’ from the 2013 Disney animated feature film Frozen. She also performed her own rendition of ABBA’s ‘Mamma Mia’ and ‘Dancing Queen’, Whitney Houston’s ‘I Wanna Dance with Somebody’,Shawn Mendes’ ‘Stitches’, and One Direction’s ‘Story of My Life’.
The singer did her part to spread the Christmas cheer with ‘O Holy Night’, ‘This Christmas’, and ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’.
“Thank you for everyone at Expo 2020 Dubai. It is a Christmas miracle we actually got to perform. This is amazing. Thank you everyone for being here and spending your Christmas day with us,” she said at the end of her show.