Showforce provided more than 40 experienced event crew to assist with the build of a huge ground-breaking ceremony for the vast entertainment resort at Qiddiya. It is approximately an hour’s drive from Riyadh and is being built on a 334 square kilometre site, making it twice the size of Disney World.

The crew were there to assist Protec with the build of a giant stage for the ceremony, essentially in the middle of the desert. Key tasks included: unloading the equipment, which was transported from South Africa; erecting the structure; building truss and installing lighting and LED video wall. We also provided experienced climbers to assist with the build of the huge scaffolding that formed the main structure of the stage. In addition, we provided follow spot operators during the event.

This was a large project and the Showforce crew did a fantastic job in difficult circumstances. Currently the area is fairly remote, and they faced both sandstorms and lightning storms throughout the build.

The event itself was a huge success with both King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in attendance and featured a live orchestra, fireworks and a vocal performance praising both leaders. The resort will include a Six Flags theme park, water parks, motor sports, cultural events and vacation homes. A spokesman said Qiddiya expects to attract 1.5 million visitors annually when the first phase opens in 2022.