In an attempt to support and celebrate healthcare workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Health Organization and international advocacy group Global Citizen have announced plans for a benefit concert on April 18th. As well being broadcast live on TV at 8pm ET, the Lady Gaga-curated event will also be streamed across almost every major streaming service, including Amazon Prime Video, Apple, Facebook, Instagram, Tencent, Twitch, Twitter, and YouTube. It’s unclear if the event will be available to stream live, however.
The One World: Together at Home event will feature appearances from dozens of big-name performers including Lizzo, Billie Eilish, and Elton John, and will be hosted by Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, and Stephen Colbert. It’s an all-star lineup that invites obvious comparisons to Live Aid, which in 1985 was the most ambitious international satellite television event ever attempted.
The April 18th event will air from 8pm to 10pm ET on ABC, Bell Media, NBC, ViacomCBS Networks and iHeartMedia in North America, and an adapted version will be broadcast on BBC One in the UK on the following day. It will also be available from a number of other broadcast partners including RTÉ, beIN Media Group, and MultiChoice Group. “There will also be a digital-only program on Saturday, April 18,” reads a statement from Global Citizen, promising more details later.
As well as streaming the event on its service, Apple will also be donating $10 million to the cause. The donation was announced by Apple CEO Tim Cook during a televised interview with Jimmy Fallon and Lady Gaga. Gaga says that she has already helped to raise $35 million for Global Citizen over the past seven days from over 68 companies around the world. The event is in part meant to support the WHO’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, which supports and equips healthcare workers around the world. As of last week, the fund has provided hundreds of thousands of pieces of protective medical equipment, and 1.5 million diagnostic kits to countries around the world.
However, Lady Gaga has clarified that One World is not meant as a fundraising telethon, The Guardian notes. Philanthropists and businesses are being asked to donate to the relief effort, but the event itself will be focused on entertainment and showing support for healthcare workers.
The benefit concert will also feature appearances and musical performances by Alanis Morissette, Andrea Bocelli, Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong, Burna Boy, Chris Martin, David Beckham, Eddie Vedder, Finneas, Idris and Sabrina Elba, J Balvin, John Legend, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kerry Washington, Lang Lang, Maluma, Paul McCartney, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Shah Rukh Khan, and Stevie Wonder. Even the cast of Sesame Street is expected to get involved.
Global Citizen is an advocacy organization focused on providing information on the novel coronavirus, and to pressure governments into taking action. Its site provides templates for various tweets to send to governments around the world to pressure them to, for example, pledge more money to fight the virus, or to support the development of a vaccine.