RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is fast becoming a hotspot for all things creative, according to a locally based DJ and filmmaker, who appeared on “The Mayman Show” this week.
Misha Saied, who has roots in Russia and Palestine, recently moved to the Kingdom from Syria to realize his dreams in the Kingdom’s thriving entertainment scene.
“It’s overwhelming. I’m not going to lie. You know, it’s pretty fascinating to be able to document all the change that’s been going on in the country and to see how year by year they keep on exceeding everyone’s expectations,” he said.
Saied’s latest project was at Riyadh Season’s Imagination Park, and he was taken aback by the entertainment offerings including the Netflix and automotive zones.
“So for the Netflix zone, you had four different experiences. Basically they showcase four of the most popular series in Saudi. So you had ‘Army of the Dead,’ ‘Money Heist,’ ‘Squid Game’ (and) ‘Stranger Things.’ I think more than $1 million worth of cars. Amazing collection. It was fun.”
Saied said he has had the opportunity to work on several events including Formula 1 and Formula E races. “I was covering Diriyah Season, so I also got the chance to shoot Anthony Joshua’s fight. It was the first time he came to Saudi.
“If you want to go back, the first thing was the Golf International Tournament, which was hosted at KAEC (King Abdullah Economic City), and that was the first time Tiesto came to the country. (And) that was the first time Mariah Carey came to the country. It was pretty fascinating to see. It was the start of the change.”
Saied said that he had an inkling of the changes taking place in Saudi while he was working in clubs in Istanbul. “I wasn’t surprised when they announced MDLBEAST you know, like the biggest electronic music festival in the region.
“Which is insane. So yeah, I’ve done MDLBEAST, XP, had two different roles, obviously as a photographer and as a DJ. XP this year was amazing. I (also) had my first-ever photography exhibition,” he said.
“It was pretty fascinating. It was an amazing experience. A lot of creatives, a lot of locals. It was, it’s beautiful to witness all the change happening and how a lot of creatives from all over the Kingdom and even internationally would come to Saudi and discuss, talk about the music industry. And see how everyone could collaborate and MDLBEAST gave a lot of opportunities to a lot of local artists.”
Saied recalled DJ Khaled visiting Saudi Arabia and performing. “He barely even flies. So he showed up and he performed in the MDLBEAST. That was historic.”
He said he was happy to have settled in the Kingdom and able to document the historic events taking place in Saudi.