Global Citizen Live includes The Weeknd, Billie Eilish, Usher, Jennifer Lopez, Ed Sheeran, Shawn Mendes, Lizzo and more.
On Sept. 25, an eclectic roster of A-listers will perform across six continents during the 24-hour Global Citizen Live, rallying to fight climate change and extreme poverty, and aiming to help the 41 million people on the brink of famine. These are issues that have only been compounded by the pandemic, notes Global Citizen CEO Hugh Evans.
“We’re going bigger than ever to reflect the scale and severity of the crisis,” he says. “This is not a celebration — it’s a moment of unity to rally the world, to petition world leaders, CEOs, philanthropists to commit to solutions that only governments and those with billions of dollars can bring about.”
Musicians and industry power players have been integral to the organization’s success since its inaugural concert in 2012, addressing world leaders on social media and behind the scenes to secure donations. After the deadly Beirut explosion in August 2020, superstar manager Wassim “Sal” Slaiby teamed with Global Citizen to help raise $1.2 million, which helped provide 7,600 people with food packages that could feed a family of five for one month. “We’ve become a crucial partner to government leaders, key [nongovernmental organizations] and private sector change-makers to harness our collective power to affect meaningful, lasting progress,” says Universal Music Group executive vp Michele Anthony, who sits on the organization’s executive management board and recalls hosting the first festival meeting in her living room.