It was sophomore Mika Koulibaly’s first time attending an AUHDIO event, and she was impressed by all the acts.
“It made me realize that there are lots of talented people in [Abu Dhabi],” she wrote to The Gazelle.
From its first showcase
, the project has come a long way, totaling eight events in eight different venues. Juliana Bello, who was involved both in AUHDIO’s logistics and performance, had a positive impression of the project, especially regarding the turnout.
“[Nivia Obando] got a pretty big turnout of people for a lot of the events, who not only were from other schools, but were not associated with any of the other acts … They weren’t supporting a friend; they had literally just heard about it and were interested, which is the point,” she said.
Throughout its time, AUHDIO traveled to Dubai, Manarat Al Saadiyat and several cafés around Abu Dhabi. It was also featured on Time Out Abu Dhabi
and incorporated into the Abu Dhabi Music Festival
, giving Nivia Obando the chance to curate one of the nights of the program.
Bello commented that she thought the involvement from the audience could be a point of improvement going forwards.
“Getting more interaction between the people at the events would have been a good idea … I don’t know how a person could do this, but having NYU Abu Dhabi kids talking to the kids from Sorbonne that were there [at an AUHDIO event] would be a huge thing,” she commented.
After finishing the last AUHDIO event, Nivia Obando admitted that he was happy but exhausted. He explained the most important lesson he learned throughout the process was about team building. He had to find people who could manage the different aspects of AUHDIO, from taking care of logistics to manning social media to recording
“You need a team that’s just willing to … [go] through everything … I built one throughout the year. I just think it was kind of last-minute — like, “Hey, can you carry this for me?” … I do not have every skill necessary to put a project like this together,” he said.
The next step for Nivia Obando lies in Dubai, where he will be living after his graduation, working in a small company with friends. He said he is talking to potential sponsors about continuing the spirit of AUHDIO but is still unsure about what will happen.