James Dolan seeks investors to build Sphere Abu Dhabi

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James L. Dolan, Executive Chairman of MSG Network, is looking for investors to build a ‘Sphere’ in Abu Dhabi. According to The New York Post, “These are serious talks with Abu Dhabi. They keep going back and forth.”

“We want to expand this globally,” Andrew Shulkind, head of capture for MSG Sphere Studios, said previously.

In September, the first Sphere arena opened in Las Vegas. This massive structure is the largest of its kind, standing at 366 feet tall and capable of seating up to 17,600 people. The arena comes with a hefty price tag of $2.3 billion, making it the most expensive entertainment venue in Las Vegas. Its primary function is to host award shows and concerts, as well as other entertainment events.

“We are looking for disrupters,” said creative director Nathalie van Sasse van Ysselt. “We have an active, creative development department. We are hosting VIP tours in Burbank and testing these creative tools so we can open up the ideas for creatives.”

A proposed MSG Sphere in Stratford, East London had its planning permission rejected by Mayor Sadiq Khan in November 2023.

A spokesperson for the mayor said: “London is open to investment from around the world, and Sadiq wants to see more world-class, ambitious, innovative entertainment venues in our city.” and added, “But as part of looking at the planning application for the MSG Sphere, the mayor has seen independent evidence that shows the current proposals would result in an unacceptable negative impact on local residents.”

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