Evgeniy Morozov, classical violinist turned impresario, sums up Dubai’s emergence as a global entertainment hub since the start of the new millennium
Classical violinist turned impresario Evgeniy Morozov sums up Dubai’s emergence as a global entertainment hub since the start of the new millennium.
Morozov, 49, who spent his formative years in Minsk, Belarus – part of the undivided Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) which disintegrated in December 1991 – rose to prominence as a violinist classic in Europe before coming to the region in 1997.
“Bahrain was my first port of call. It was a hip, hip place in the 1990s and I stayed there for the next four years after playing all over Western Europe since leaving Minsk,” he says.
In March 2001 he came to Dubai with his quartet to play at the iconic Burj Al Arab. “It was my home for the next 12 years. I played all kinds of music – from western classics to Hollywood soundtracks and songs by Elton John, Josh Groban, The Queen, etc.,” he recalls .
Despite his training in classical music, Morozov sees himself more as an artist, open to performing interpretations that appeal to a diverse audience. “I started to get musical education at the Belarusian State Academy of Music in Minsk when I was six years old, but I never limited myself to classical music,” he says.
However, classical music training has stood him in good stead and helped him maintain balance in life, as Dubai’s entertainment landscape has undergone tumultuous change over the years even before the unprecedented Covid pandemic hit. -19 does not hit.
“I got into event management in 2004, when the city was making rapid progress to become one of the leading entertainment hubs in the Middle East,” he says.
In 2010, he established his own company, M Premiere, which since 2017 has brought together entertainment stars from Russia, former Soviet republics and Western Europe under the aegis of the PaRus International Musical Festival ( see box).
His musical performances may have taken a back seat, as the other members of his quartet have left Dubai over the years and occasionally reunite for an encore, but Morozov is happy to reinvent himself as an impresario, whose skills go beyond fiddling and “organizing”. and the execution of all types of events”.
“Truth be told, I’ve made a name for myself in event management – whether you’re planning a concert, holiday party, gala dinner, corporate event, charity ball or any other type of event, whether large or small,” he adds. “Everything is within reach of my team and tailored to individual needs. I work with an exclusive range of clients and guarantee privacy and confidentiality. to each of them.
Before PaRus, he held a big concert at the same location in 2016, which “encouraged me to organize a similar event with a new brand image”. In November 2018, coinciding with the second edition of PaRus, Morozov teamed up with Anton Viner, a Russian businessman, owner of a network of Uzbek restaurants called Uryuk in Moscow, Kazan, Yekaterinburg and London, to open the Chalet Berezka, a restaurant with more than 300 people. 1-seat fine-dining restaurant serving popular dishes from Russia and former Soviet republics at The Pointe, overlooking the breathtaking Palm Jumeirah.
Four years later, Viner may no longer be associated with Chalet Berezka, but Morozov has managed to recruit two other Moscow-based investors.
“Chalet Berezka has become popular with members of our community. Our live music, karaoke, exquisite menu and homemade drinks have become a star attraction among diners,” says Morozov.
The approximately 40 staff members of Chalet Berezka are a microcosm of Russia and the former Soviet republics, which are linked by a common language, Russian, and a shared history and culture in a changing world order.
“The Russian-speaking community has started coming to Dubai in large numbers over the past seven years and for many, Chalet Berezka has become a unique destination due to its word-of-mouth publicity,” he says.
Beyond the food and drink business, live entertainment is a risky proposition, Morozov says. “I insisted on show insurance, no matter how high the premium. This helps to hedge against potential losses and trade flops,” he adds.
A thought that should resonate well among Dubai-based impresarios and organizers of live shows and events. And there is no greater learning about uncertainties than the unleashed contagion that has wreaked havoc over the past two years.
From the PaRus music festival to the Dresden Opera Ball
Few people know that Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli performed at the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai on October 1, 2021, thanks to Evegeniy Morozov. The acclaimed musician performed again on November 8 last year at Events Arena, Jumeirah Beach Hotel as part of his Believe World Tour and as a signature concert of the fifth PaRus International Music Festival 2021. The concert featured the hits of maestro Bocelli. latest album Believe. Philipp Kirkorov, Leonid Agutin, Diana Arbenina, Basta, BI-2 were the other performers. This year, the event will be held at the same location from November 3-6.
José Plácido Domingo Embil, Marina Rebeka, Riz Khan, Oksana Fedorova, The European Peace Chamber Orchestra Dresden, Anton Lubchenko will perform at the Dresden Opera Ball at Dubai Opera on November 15, organized by M Premiere.