Among the questions surrounding Qatar 2022 are lawsuits for mistreatment of the workers in charge of the construction of the stadiums, as well as the lack of respect for human rights and the denigration of the LGBTIQ+ community. It is as a result of this that artists from the world scene have rejected the contract offered by the organizer.
In the midst of rumors that placed her as the head of the opening act, the British singer Dua Lipa used her social networks to clarify that at no time has she negotiated her participation in Qatar 2022. The reason, obviously, is the host country’s lack of empathy .
“There is currently a lot of speculation that I will be performing at the opening ceremony of the World Cup in Qatar. I am not going to act nor have I been involved in negotiations to do so”, he assured in a statement posted on Instagram. “”, added the 27-year-old artist.
Another of the personalities who joined the rejection of this new edition of the soccer world cup is Rod Stewart. The “All For Love” singer revealed, in an interview with the British newspaper The Sunday Times, that they had offered him a payment of about a million dollars if he agreed to go on stage at the Al Bayt Stadium. “They offered me a lot of money to play there fifteen months ago. I turned it down because it didn’t seem right to go (to the World Cup),” Stewart said. “Fans should be careful”he warned.
Meanwhile, he added that Qatar 2022 . This, in clear protest for the mistreatment received by the LGTBIQ+ community in the Arab country.
The last of the stars to decline the invitation to be part of the ceremony was the Colombian Shakira. After the scandal around her break with the Spanish footballer Gerard Piqué, the interpreter of the famous “Waka Waka” had been named as one of the possible appearances at the opening of Qatar 2022.
Nevertheless, In recent days, the news emerged that the singer had also declined the invitation. People close to Shakira confirmed this decision to the Spanish television space “El programa de Ana Rosa”, from the Telecinco network.
“They have confirmed that Shakira will not perform at the opening ceremony, but they have not confirmed that she will have any role throughout the World Cup.”, said the journalist Adriana Dorronsoro, who spoke with the singer’s close environment. “They have confirmed to me that today their participation is not confirmed”, added Sandra Aladro, panelist of the same television space.
And now who will be able to help me?
Faced with the refusal of three great exponents of music, in various genres, the organization has had to move quickly to get another artist to accept singing in Qatar 2022. And, apparently, they found one of their summons precisely in Latin America .
If there is someone who seems not to have been affected by the criticism of his presence at the World Cup, that is the Colombian Maluma. During the week his name had been called as the possible new leader of the opening of the World Cup. But, it would be the singer himself who would come out to confirm that he will be present at the football event.
“Colombia is going to the World Cup! We are going to sing the official song of the Fifa World Cup #TukohTaka at the fan event. See you soon Qatar. Long live the football party!”, wrote the artist. In this way, he specified that, although he will not be at the opening gala to be held at the Al Bayt Stadium, he will be part of the event linked to the World Cup.
The Colombian is part of the FIFA Fan Festival, held last Saturday afternoon at Al Bidda Park in Doha, where he was accompanied by the American rapper Nicki Minaj and the Lebanese singer Myriam Fares and performed the official song “Tukoh Taka”.
But Latin America would not be the only continent that would say present with its music. The Colombian artist was joined by K-pop idol Jeon Jungkook, a member of the successful Korean band BTS. Last Tuesday, the singer arrived in the capital of Qatar, accompanied by his team, to prepare his solo show.
The public is divided before the confirmed news of the participation of the BTS member. On the one hand, there are netizens who consider it a bad decision on the part of the artist and his label to accept to perform at the opening gala of Qatar 2022 due to all the existing questions. On the other, there are BTS fans, called ARMY, who respect Jungkook’s actions and send him his good wishes hours before his presentation.
There are still no further details on how the popular 25-year-old ‘idol’ will get involved with this sporting event, but it is known that -during the morning of last Friday- he was rehearsing. What is certain is that he will surprise the public with his performance, just as he has been doing in presentations with BTS.
What determines the pace of the World Cup?
This obsession with which artists will or will not be related to the World Cup demonstrate the growing importance that musical elements have had in the sporting event, beginning with Los Rambles and the song “El rock del Mundial” for the World Cup that was held in Chile in 1962.
Since then we’ve seen a whole symphony of tournament-related tracks, from forgettable ones like Il Divo’s “The Time of Our Lives” for Germany 2006 and Anastacia’s “Boom” at South Korea/Japan 2002. to undeniable classics such as the aforementioned “Waka Waka” by Shakira in South Africa 2010 and “La copa de la vida” by Ricky Martin in France 98award-winning songs that stand out as some of the most successful in the career of their performers.
The question arises, what separates a memorable theme from an inconsequential one? To answer this question, El Comercio consulted with the renowned music producer Manuel Garrido-Lecca, who, although he pointed out that there is no “magic formula” that guarantees success in melodic matters, there are “a series of patterns that can be detected in the songs that end up becoming the World Cup anthem”.
The main one has to do with the chorus of the song – also known as the hook or melodic motif -, which must be reached within the first minute of starting the song and It has to be not only super memorable, but also simple to the point “that it can hit even a four-year-old.””.
Another necessary element for a successful World Cup song is the material it is sung about. “It has to address some type of theme that is related not only to what sport is, but also to what it is, for example, effort, getting ahead, persistence, eagerness to achieve your dreams”, Garrido-Lecca pointed out. He added that the singer’s interpretation is also important, which has to have a specific emotional projection. “You have to feel that there is conviction behind the person who is singing it, like they are really living it”, he indicated. “People connect with that because that look at how they’re living the song is really feeling it.”
These elements, particularly the catchy hooks, are seen in both Ricky Martin and Shakira’s songs. “The ‘Waka Waka’ is extremely simple and it is precisely the simplicity of the melodic hook that is possibly responsible for its success”, considered the music producer. “It’s almost impossible for a 6-year-old not to remember him, also, with the simplicity that he’s not saying anything, it’s just ‘waka waka’. And that’s also the good thing about ‘La Copa de la vida’, which is super catchy. Those songs were both very well worked.”
Garrido-Lecca considered that “Hayya Hayya”, one of the anthems of the Qatar 2022 World Cup, also shows signs of the same parameters, although trying to add nuances and sound elements that refer to the Middle East. “But for the rest, it seems to me that the song is standard within what I have told you and perhaps it will not be one of the most remembered of the world”, he narrowed.
With so much uncertainty and speculation surrounding the opening ceremony of Qatar 2022, it is interesting to review an example of an event of a similar magnitude that had a successful resolution: the opening of the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima.
The show, which took place on July 26 of that year at the National Stadium, was attended by Peruvian artists such as Delfina Paredes and Juan Diego Flórez, as well as foreigners such as Puerto Rican Luis Fonsi, then one of the most renowned musicians thanks to to the theme “Despacito”. Applauded for its skilful combination of choreography, music, fireworks and special effects, that night’s show is still remembered inside and outside the country.
According to Carlos Neuhaus, president of the organizing committee of the 2019 Pan American Games, the objective of this type of event is “show the country show the host country so that people know a little more about their culture, their past and their present”.
“They say that a good inauguration ceremony, as it marks the mood of the country and the mood of how they see one from the outside“, he pointed. In the case of the 2019 Pan American Games, what they wanted to do was a ‘peruvian shock’ in which the entire culture of our country was shown, from its prehistory to modern times.
For this Not only local talent such as the dancer Vania Masías as the choreography director and the musician Lucho Quequezana were hired to musicalize the ceremony, but also an international company named Balich WorldWide Shows to take care of the production of the show. “There was a lot, a lot of material and the company that won took great care in studying our culture“, he pointed. The idea of the ceremony was “to mix the existing technology with our history”, highlighting the inclusion of elements such as the sacred mountain of Lima, Pariacaca, on the stage.
Neuhaus highlighted that this type of event has innumerable jobs that take place away from the cameras that are essential for its proper development, such as the review of the stadium structure, the provision of tickets for people with disabilities, the creation of changing rooms and various logistical problems. They ranged from getting the buses carrying the athletes to the ceremony on time to coordinating the fireworks safely. These are apparently invisible tasks, but they avoid inconveniences and even tragedies.
This, together with the work of the people on stage and several days of rehearsals, led to the success of the event. “The conjunction that was made of everything and it was a job planned almost to the millimeter, nothing was left to improvisation and the people were also very professional”, Neuhaus opined, highlighting the attitude of ‘putting the shoulder’ that was seen among those who participated in the ceremony.
It remains in doubt whether the World Cup in Qatar, which until the time of publication of this note does not reveal the complete list of artists that will perform at the opening ceremony, will be able to have the same level of planning to take the event to good port.