Since becoming Prime Minister, Narendra Modi has performed in New York’s storied Madison Square Garden and played drums on stage in Japan. His next big-ticket venue: Sydney’s Allphones Arena this November during his four-day trip to Australia for the G20 summit …
Mr. Modi will address what is expected to be a sell-out crowd at the 21,000-seat venue in Australia’s financial and commercial capital onNovember 17 during his four-day trip to the country for the G20 summit in Brisbane. Organisers say it will eclipse the Prime Minister’s biggest gig so far, when he spoke to a crowd of 18,000 people, mostly Indian-Americans, at Madison Square Garden on September 28. “This will be bigger and better,” said Balesh Singh Dhankhar one of the organisers of the reception for Mr. Modi. The Allphones Arena, built for the 2000 Olympics, “has more grandeur” than Madison Square Garden, he added.
The stadium in Manhattan is famous for hosting some of the biggest names in entertainment, like the Beatles, Bruce Springsteen and “The Fight of the Century” between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. The Allphone Arena also hosts musical acts and boxing matches. In the same month as Mr. Modi’s visit, The Rolling Stones and Katy Perry will play the arena and an Ultimate Fighting Championship event will take place there.
Australia is home to around 350,000 people who were born in India, according to the latest census data from 2011. That was a 90 per cent increase on the number recorded in the census in 2006, but a tenth the size of the Indian-American community in the United States. After Mr. Modi’s speech in New York, people in Australia began asking when he would come here, said Mr. Dhankhar, a spokesman for the Indian Australian Community Foundation that is helping put on the event that was conceived only weeks ago. Some 14,000 people have registered in the first two and a half days of registration, according to the organisers. It will be broadcast live on Indian television channels.
“We invited Mr. Modi and said the Indian diaspora in Australia is very eager to see him,” Mr. Dhankhar added. Tickets for the Sydney event are free and the show will start around 5.30 p.m., but further details of the spectacle are under wraps right now, Mr. Dhankhar said. “There are a number of cultural and exciting events before the speech that would be a surprise for the audience in India and Australia. These will be wider and more surprising that at Madison Square Gardens.”