Important Announcement

Unfortunately, due to the uncertainty we are facing in light of COVID-19, COBIS and Hartland International School have taken the difficult decision to postpone the COBIS Music Festival. We regret that this event will not take place in June 2020 in Dubai as planned. We appreciate that this will be a disappointment for many of the students and teachers who were hoping to attend, but the welfare of the students and our wider school communities is of the utmost importance. We are hopeful that we will be able to identify a new date for this event in the following academic year, and will be in touch with all registered schools with more details in due course.

We apologise for the inconvenience and disappointment this may cause your school, but hope that you will appreciate that this decision has been made in order to safeguard the wellbeing of our school communities.

COBIS would like to take this opportunity to express thanks to all of the schools and teachers that have been preparing for this event, and also to Hartland International School who have done a tremendous job preparing for the COBIS Music Festival. We are looking forward to a successful event in 2021.

The COBIS Music Festival celebrates the talent of young musicians, in years 6-13, from COBIS schools around the world. The programme will feature a range of musical workshops, competitions and performances. Students will also have the opportunity to socialise with their international peers and see the dazzling city of Dubai during an evening activity.

Dates and location

The COBIS Music Festival will take place from 4 - 6 June 2020 in Dubai, UAE. The event will be hosted by Hartland International School.

Event details

During the festival, students will compete against their international peers. Students can enter the following categories (‘lower school’ refers to those in Years 6-9 and ‘upper school’ refers to those in Years 10-13):

  • Upper school piano solo
  • Lower school piano solo
  • Upper school instrumental solo (classical)
  • Lower school instrumental solo (classical)
  • Upper school instrumental ensemble (classical)
  • Lower school instrumental ensemble (classical)
  • Upper school vocal solo
  • Lower school vocal solo
  • Upper school vocal ensemble
  • Lower school vocal ensemble
  • Pop/rock band (1 entry per school maximum)
  • Upper school pop/rock instrumental solo (drum kit, electric guitar, bass guitar)
  • Lower school pop/rock instrumental solo (drum kit, electric guitar, bass guitar)

Solos should be no more than 5 minutes; ensembles should be no more than 10 minutes.

Students will also attend musical workshops to refine their techniques and develop new skills. This will include a workshop led by Rob Johnston, Choral Manager for BBC Singers.

The festival will also provide students with the opportunity to socialise whilst seeing the sights of Dubai aboard a Dhow Cruise. 


Competition prizes will include:


COBIS registration fee per school: £295
Student fee: £200
Staff fee: £160

These costs include:

  • Competition entry
  • Musical workshops
  • Transfers between the airport and accommodation (upon arrival and departure)
  • Transport between the accommodation and event venues
  • Catering

Accommodation and travel to/from Dubai is not included in this fee.

How to register

Schools should register for the event through our online form. Registration will close at midday (GMT) on Monday 24th February 2020. 

School staff must register on behalf of students. Each school can bring a maximum of 20 students.


Accommodation options are available to download here. Participating schools should not book accommodation until the Music Festival has been formally confirmed.

Transport will be provided between the recommended hotels and the event venue. It is therefore advised that participating schools book to stay in one of the recommended hotels.

Terms and Conditions

Download the Terms and Conditions for the COBIS Music Festival here.

Competition Sponsor

We would like to thank our Supporting Member, Future Learning, for sponsoring the COBIS Music Festival 2020.

Future Learning (FL) is a technology-enhanced, project based school specialising in teaching through digital media projects which involves a strong focus on collaboration and Intercultural skills. We are proudly accredited by EAQUALS and our head office is in Dublin, Ireland. Many of our visiting students have excellent language skills already and also request to take part in projects with local students when they are here in Ireland.

Each year FL works with almost 6,000 international students, offering fully catered school tours (known as mini-stays) to different locations around Ireland.  FL also specialises in training teachers in the use of Technology in the Classroom.  

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