| 22 May 2024
Focus is to create an iconic venue and international-level IPs: Dome Entertainment MD Mazhar Nadiadwala

MUMBAI: Times are changing and Mumbai - the capital and trendsetter for everything entertainment – finds itself adapting to a revised version where more and more outdoor music festivals prefer heading out to nearby cities than paying at least three times to what it would cost originally. The existing ones – be it the recently concluded Global Citizen, Ballard Festival or the Worli Festival – execute their annual initiatives outdoors and will continue to do so. However, Royal Opera House’s return as ‘live’ venue adds another name to the exclusive list of grand indoor venues, a list so far dominated mainly by Dome@NSCI, SVP Stadium and NCPA.

While NCPA continued with its regular ideology concerning live gigs, musicals and theatre plays, Dome@NSCI treated 2016 in a more experimental approach. “Dome@NSCI does not restrict itself to a particular kind of event,” said Managing Director at Dome Entertainment, Mazhar Nadiadwala. Music festivals do not act as the sole parameter to judge a city’s live event culture and Mumbai – in its last three years – witnessed a surge in cafes and open spaces that organised weekly and monthly live performances on a smaller but more consistent scale. Some promoters believe Dome@NSCI, SVP Stadium can provide the ‘Madison Square Garden’ factor to the city that never sleeps, and Nadiadwala believes that events like Star Sports Pro Kabaddi League and Disney’s musical ‘Beauty and the Beast’ can help the venue achieve that magnitude of importance and exclusivity.

Towards the end of the years, Dome@NSCI, SVP Stadium hosted Jammin’ live concert, DJ Nucleya’s album launch and Rock On 2 concert, to name a few, and Nadiadwala takes pride in the fact that the venue’s drive towards exclusivity restricts to the offerings as a venue, and not towards a particular genre or industry.  “Dome@NSCI is also popularly known as a venue which caters to a vast variety of music festivals and concerts and gigs. In the past few months we have had a variety of events like EDM festivals and music concerts such as Rock On 2 as well as our very own IP, ‘Dome RaasGarba’ which was a three-day Navratri festival that we curated here at Dome@NSCI. Dome strives to be the one stop destination for all music concerts.”

One stop for all music concerts is the goal, addresses Nadiadwala, but the challenge would be gaining the promoters’ trust who have chosen Mumbai as the city for their respective IPs. With the two examples – Don’t Let Daddy Know and Beauty and the Beast – Dome@NSCI provided positive outcomes against all the regular complications that arrive with an outdoor event, usually. Live concerts in an indoor setup carry a few pros over outdoor events concerning the lights, own decors, sound systems and even pyrotechnics. “The team works throughout the week to setup an event. The goal for the upcoming years is to be known nationally as the one-stop destination for all large scale national and international events. To achieve this goal, Dome has started working towards bringing down international artists to perform in India. The vision is to create an iconic venue for India so much that Dome becomes synonymous when you think of the city.”  

It wasn’t until the response to Don’t Let Daddy Know that the promoters, once again, noticed the vitality of Dome@NSCI as the venue, considering its location and the accessibility. Nadiadwala understands the music promoters’ desperation to establish their efforts in best possible manner sometimes may lead to resorting to the old school way of organising festivals. However, Nadiadwala adds the experience and the “power of an indoor venue is unmatchable.”

The comfortable theatre seating arrangement, unlike the wooden seating in stadiums and outdoor concerts, the air conditioning facilities, an array of F&B services during events, high end security services, parking facilities as well as sanitation facilities (a huge problem faced usually at outdoor events) count as few elements that steer Dome@NSCI to an ideal indoor home for entertainment in India, for audience across all ages. It offers a huge space for shows demanding standing arrangement, and with a capacity of at least 12000, Dome@NSCI easily addresses the issues of events of all natures.

Dome's long term goal is to be an iconic venue in the country and to create IPs that go across India and internationally also, informs Nadiadwala. The actions executed towards creating own IPs, this year, suggest that Dome Entertainment has laid down the groundwork in order to achieve its ambitions. The venue’s IP ‘DOME Musically Yours’, featuring Arijit Singh, and the association with Radio Mirchi for ‘Sufi Nights’ prove Nadiadwala & co.’s vision for the upcoming editions and the year.  

The 100000 sq. feet large pillar-less arena caters to events with attendance of 300 all the way up to attendance in 5 digits, as witnessed during Nucleya’s album launch. Nadiadwala credits the superior engineering team and flexible floor plan to adapt to the attendance demand for the same.The encouraging response after the Beauty and the Beast Mumbai edition helped Dome to entertain more events of the genre, and Nadiadwala hopes to reveal the details of the upcoming events shortly.