It’s rare in a place like UAE to check your fancies at the door, walk into a room bare and expose your Andy-Warhol interior to a likeminded group of people.
What’s rarer still is to have them genuinely appreciate the performance and have a cohesive discussion with you after.
This summer, explore the most free-spirited displays of emotion through music, art and poetry at these UAE Open Mic Nights we love:
1. Jazz @ Pizza Express
For: Mildly-experienced performers
When: 7:30pm to 1am, Sundays
Where: Jazz@PizzaExpress, Cluster A, JLT
How much: It’s free
Why we love it: The vibe in the room has a palpable zing, the audience is lightly liquored up and supportive, and there’s nothing like people taking to the dance floor when you’re playing. Since the restaurant has branches in Dubai and Abu Dhabi both, residents in both the cities can take advantage.
More: The restaurant is packed with events through the week, so pick what strikes your fancy: all-star jam night on Tuesdays, dance and swing night on Wednesdays and local jazz artist night on Saturdays.
Contact: +971 4 441 6342 for reservations
2. Jam Night @ The Music Room
For: Competitors & Experimenters
When: 8:30pm, Tuesdays
Where: The Music Room, Ground Floor-Majestic Hotel, Mankhool Road
Why we love it: Sometimes, there’s nothing better for your creative fluids than to jam with other performers. With state-of-the-art sound equipment, musicians and acousticians working together to achieve an impeccable sound quality. Take your untested tunes and set them free here.
More: Apart from Jam Night, every Tuesday and Thursday is Ladies night! This means free entry for ladies and free selected cocktails from 8pm to 10 pm.
Contact: Tariq on 050 845 1674 or Jasmine 056 799 6335
3. Blank Space Open Mic Night
For: Amateur or Established
When: Every month [For timings, watch their Facebook page]
Where: Usually at Life ‘N One Café, Jumeirah
How much: AED 25 entry fee
Why we love it: With 10 successful open mic events till date, Blank Space has proven itself a cocoon for aspiring poets, musicians and comedians. We love the community feel even when you’re a first-timer. It’s warm all around and a great place to meet new people, get inspired and make deep friendships
Contact: Find out more and make reservations at: firstname.lastname@example.org
4. Open Mic Nights @ The Gramercy
For: Up & Comers
When: 8pm to 1am, Fridays
Where: The Gramercy, Precinct Building 3, DIFC
Why we love it: With a lively host, Abbo [a British-born singer-songwriter-guitarist], a great atmosphere and delicious drinks, it’s a great [and different] way to spend a Friday night.
More: Alongside the epic open mic nights, the British Gastro-pub also hosts various themed nights like Sunday Madness, Men’s night on Mondays and Ladies night on Tuesdays. You can also get a 50% off selected hops all night at the pub.
Contact: Call +9714 437 7511 ; Email: email@example.com
5. 10 Open Mic Night
For: Truly competitive artist
When: 8pm to 10pm, Tuesdays
Where: Original Wings and Rings, Liberty House, DIFC
Why we love it: Art with a prize! Performers get 15 minutes on stage to show their talent, and can land a chance of winning a trip to Sri Lanka for two nights, an iPhone 6 or AED 1,000 dine-in voucher for the restaurant. This is based on the voting from the in-house guests for each round.
More: You can enjoy the traditional or boneless wings from the house for just AED 3.99 every Tuesday from 12pm- 8pm. So grab a seat before 8, and hog on some delicious food at great discount before you take to the stage.
Contact: +9714 359 6900
6. Open Mic Night @B-Lounge
For: Experimenters and Amateurs
When: 7pm-10pm, First Saturday of every month
Where: B-Lounge @ Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel and Resort
Why we love it: Open mic nights at B-Lounge are one of only two open mic nights in Abu Dhabi [currently]. The ambience is easy-going, and since it’s not a bar, if you’re under 21, this is a good place to get noticed.
More: Chill out at the lounge’s dedicated bar, and get a chance to see popular hotel cover bands, which make an appearance to participate in the performances.
Contact: +9712 677 3333
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