Entertainers Unite To Kick Out the Pandemic Blues

As in the recent past, hope in today's crisis is fanned through the combined efforts of media and the creative class.

Late last month, Elton John, the Backstreet Boys, Mariah Carey Billie Eilish, Alicia Keys, Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes and others coalesced apart but in unity to perform a Living Room Concert for America that was organized by the Fox network and broadcast in Canada over various Bell Media platforms.

The commercial-free feed, using the Instagram platform, was not only a successful draw; it also raised more than $500K for the Canadian Red Cross and other disaster relief agencies strained for resources during the current global health crisis.

This Easter Sunday, Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli will perform at the Duomo cathedral in Milan, accompanied by the cathedral organist, Emanuele Vianelli.

The performance, which is being called ‘Music For Home,’ will stream worldwide on Bocelli’s Youtube channel beginning at 6 pm UK time, 10 am PST, and 1 pm EST.

Tuesday it was announced that entertainers from around the world will come together for a global ‘One World’ televised special in support of the fight against the coronavirus pandemic on April 18.

Donations raised will benefit the Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund, as well as local and regional charities providing food, shelter and healthcare to those in need.

Hosted by a quorum of US-based late-night talk show hosts, the line-up of celebrities and musicians announced to perform on the telecast so far include Alanis Morissette, Andrea Bocelli, Billie Eilish, Billie Joe Armstrong, Burna Boy, Chris Martin, David Beckham, Eddie Vedder, Elton John, FINNEAS, Idris and Sabrina Elba, J Balvin, John Legend, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kerry Washington, Lang Lang, Lizzo, Maluma, Paul McCartney, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Shah Rukh Khan and Stevie Wonder.

The special will be broadcast live starting at 8 pm ET on ABC, NBC, ViacomCBS Networks and iHeartMedia, as well as on Bell Media networks and platforms in Canada.

Internationally, BBC One will run the program on April 19, with international broadcasters that include beIN Media Group, MultiChoice Group and RTE.

The virtual broadcast will be a multi-hour digital broadcast and will also stream on Alibaba, Amazon Prime Video, Apple, Facebook, Instagram, LiveXLive, Tencent, Tencent Music Entertainment Group, TIDAL, TuneIn, Twitch, Twitter, Yahoo, and YouTube. 

These and other large and small acts of mercy during our time of trouble can be viewed on the CBC Music website where Holly Gordon keeps track of the live streams available for Canadians to watch and listen to.

As she writes in the calendar preface: “This time of social distancing is necessary but difficult, putting a big strain on people whose livelihoods depend on bringing people together. And while musicians have been cancelling tours and plans daily, they still want to bring their art to the masses — and hopefully drum up some revenue in the process, from fans who are able to contribute during this tough financial time.”

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