The Weeknd, BTS and Billie Eilish will take part in Global Citizen Live, a 24-hour event on Sept. 25 that’s intended to raise money and awareness to fight worldwide threats including COVID-19, climate change and extreme poverty.
Hugh Evans, CEO of Global Citizen, is hoping the event, timed to the United Nations General Assembly, will encourage governments, corporations and philanthropists to fund a billion COVID-19 vaccine doses by September, especially in Africa. The international advocacy group also hopes to raise $6 billion for famine relief efforts for the 41 million people worldwide who are estimated to be on the brink of starvation, as well as enough money to plant a billion trees to help counter climate change.
For anyone who questions whether these institutions will manage to generate more money to donate, Evans points to the current space race.
“As billionaires are leaping into space, we need to remind people that we’ve really only got one planet and we need to make sure that we that we actually care for it and for those who are on it,” Evans told the Associated Press. “This is something the ultra-high-net-worth community can solve the world’s problems right now.
Global Citizen Live – which will run the gamut from pop stars H.E.R., Lizzo, Lorde and Ed Sheeran to rockers Coldplay, Green Day, and Metallica and international artists from Andrea Bocelli and Lang Lang to Angelique Kidjo and Femi Kuti – will take place on six continents. Live events are planned for Central Park in New York City, the Champ de Mars in Paris, as well as venues in London and Los Angeles. Performances and hosted segments will come from Sydney; Rio de Janeiro; Seoul, South Korea; and Lagos, Nigeria.
“It is very important to me to be a part of this historic event to spread awareness and encourage action toward helping the people of Ethiopia during this devastating humanitarian crisis they are faced with,” The Weeknd said in a statement. “It’ll be an honor to perform and help bring support to these citizens who are suffering so severely.”
Also set to participate are Adam Lambert, Burna Boy, Camila Cabello, Christine and the Queens, Davido, Demi Lovato, DJ Snake, Doja Cat, Duran Duran, Hugh Jackman & Deborra-lee Furness, Keith Urban, Shawn Mendes, The Lumineers, Tiwa Savage and Usher. Ticketing details and performances for the individual cities, as well as additional artists, will be announced in August.