International advocacy organisation, Global Citizen, has announced exciting new additions to the line-up for VAX LIVE: The Concert to Reunite the World, which will take place on Sunday, 2 May at the SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. The first large-scale music event to be held for a COVID-compliant audience of fully-vaccinated frontline workers, VAX LIVE will be used to call on governments, the private sector and philanthropists to commit towards securing the equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. The event will air Saturday, May 8, 2021 on MultiChoice’s 1Magic and on the SABC’s Channel S3 in South Africa, which broadcasts throughout Africa, and livestream on YouTube.
Among today’s line-up additions:
Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, are serving as Campaign Chairs of VAX LIVE and will be delivering an important global message for vaccine equity during the event. To help ensure equitable access to the vaccine, they’ve also been leading a coordinated drive across the private sector to raise critical funds for the vaccine-sharing program COVAX.
Multi-platinum recording artist, actress and producer, Selena Gomez, as host, the event will be headlined by a multinational line-up that will include South Africa’s very own Nomzamo Mbatha who will be joined by Jennifer Lopez, Eddie Vedder, Foo Fighters, Ben Affleck, Chrissy Teigen, David Letterman, Gayle King, Jimmy Kimmel, Olivia Munn, and Sean Penn.
Global Citizen is proud to announce a special appearance by President Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, Vice President Harris as part of Global Citizen’s partnership with the White House’s “We Can Do This” initiative to increase public confidence in COVID-19 vaccines while reinforcing basic prevention measures, such as mask wearing and social distancing. Additionally, President Macron of France, Prime Minister Trudeau of Canada, and Prime Minister Plenković of Croatia will make appearances.
Cisco announced $5M, the Analog Devices Foundation announced $1M, and The Coca-Cola Foundation announced $500K to support COVAX. Cisco’s $5M contribution to the Gavi COVAX AMC will be matched by a Swiss Foundation who prefers to remain anonymous. These commitments, totaling $11.5 million, will fund the purchase of an estimated 2.3 million vaccine doses for health workers.
The Vax Live campaign is calling on businesses to donate dollars for doses via COVAX, wealthy governments to share excess doses immediately with COVAX, and for pharmaceutical companies like Moderna to make vaccines available at not-for-profit prices.
The event will be pre-recorded and will be broadcast and streamed on Saturday, 8 May on a number of channels and radio stations in the US, Brazil and Colombia, as well as on MultiChoice’s 1Magic and on the SABC’s Channel S3 in South Africa and on which airs throughout Africa. Global Citizen’s exclusive streaming partner, YouTube, will stream an extended 90-minute version of the event on the Global Citizen channel, starting at 20:00 ET (02:00 CAT). This will include additional performances and appearances by NCT 127 and Picture This, as well as by YouTube’s creators, Daniel El Travieso, Kati Morton, ShootforLove, Thembe Mahlaba and The Try Guys.
As part of VAX LIVE, Global Citizen is campaigning to support the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) initiative – including COVAX – a vaccine-sharing program co-led by the World Health Organization (WHO), to ensure global equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.
During the special, Global Citizen will call on governments asking them to pledge a total of $19 billion, the outstanding balance needed by the ACT-A to get 1.8 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses plus tests and treatments to the world’s poorest countries by the end of 2021. As part of the campaign, Spain announced the donation of an estimated 7.5 million vaccine doses as soon as 50% of the Spanish population is vaccinated. France announced starting the sharing of doses for health workers across Africa with an initial donation of 100,000 this month, and at least 500,000 by June.
“Over the past year, our world has experienced pain, loss, and struggle—together. Now we need to recover and heal—together. We can’t leave anybody behind. We will all benefit, we will all be safer, when everyone everywhere has equal access to the vaccine. We must pursue equitable vaccine distribution, and in that, restore faith in our common humanity. This mission couldn’t be more critical or important,” said Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Campaign Chairs of Vax Live.
“As part of the Vax Live campaign, the Government of Spain will facilitate to Latin America and the Caribbean a quantity of vaccines against COVID-19 that corresponds, at least, to between 5% and 10% of the total vaccines that our country receives throughout 2021. I am proud of my country and of the dedication of its people, including public representatives, for showing solidarity in responding to this crisis, that has been so brutal both in Spain and abroad,” said Prime Minister of Spain Pedro Sanchez.
“Last autumn, I called for the sharing of the doses ordered by our countries, to ensure both solidarity and health security. This winter I proposed that each country share at least 5% of the doses ordered with the poorest countries. I can already tell you that, as far as France is concerned, this objective will be exceeded by the end of the year. With the European vaccine sharing mechanism via the COVAX initiative that France is inaugurating, we are in concrete solidarity in the fight against the virus, which does not care about borders. Today I call on all my colleagues to join this momentum and make a commitment at Vax Live,” said President of France, Emmanuel Macron.
Fran Katsoudas, EVP and Chief People, Policy & Purpose Officer of Cisco, said, “At Cisco, our purpose is to power an inclusive future for all, and we know that starts with an inclusive recovery from COVID-19. The private sector has an important role to play in this, and we are proud to make a commitment to COVAX to ensure that health workers and the most vulnerable have fair and equitable access to vaccines.”
“COVAX has helped spur the rapid development of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. But this extraordinary effort will be for naught, if we don’t get vaccines to the people who need them the most. This is the moment for the private sector to step up and support vaccine equity,” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi the Vaccine Alliance. “Thank you to Cisco for leading the way with a $5 million contribution to the Gavi COVAX AMC, which will be matched dollar for dollar. We hope that this generous contribution will set an example for others from the private sector to pledge at Global Citizen’s Vax Live event on 8th May.”
“We are proud to partner with an amazing group of selfless frontline heroes, global leaders, civic groups and entertainment superstars to combat the pandemic and support vaccine efforts throughout the world,” said E. Stanley Kroenke, SoFi Stadium and Hollywood Park Developer and Owner/Chairman of the Los Angeles Rams. “We are honored that such a meaningful and impactful event – Vax Live – is our first event at SoFi Stadium open to the public. Hundreds of millions around the globe will be watching as we raise awareness and the resources desperately needed to bring communities back together again.”
“We are truly grateful for the time, effort and energy that everyone has given to make VAX LIVE a reality within just a few months. We’re thrilled to be hosting Global Citizen’s first live event since the pandemic began alongside these incredible artists, entertainers and individuals who are donating their time to support our mission to achieve vaccine equity and build vaccine confidence globally,” said Katie Hill, SVP, Head of Music, Entertainment & Artist Relations at Global Citizen. “I’m moved by the enthusiasm of every VAX LIVE participant to play a role in ending the COVID-19 pandemic as we all work together to come back, safely.”
VAX LIVE is supported by the World Health Organization (WHO), European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Prime Minister of Italy and G20 Chair Mario Draghi, and President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, Prime Minister of Norway Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Spain Pedro Sanchez, President of France Emmanuel Macron, and the State of California.
Policy partners include the WHO; the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI); Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator; theFoundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) and UNITAID. Philanthropic partners include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, New Venture Fund and Allan and Gill Gray Philanthropy.
In partnership with Declan Kelly and Teneo, the global CEO advisory firm, VAX LIVE and Global Citizen’s Recovery Plan for the World are supported by a coalition of Global Partners including: Cisco, Citi, The Coca-Cola Company, Delta Air Lines, Google, Live Nation, P&G and Verizon, and Pan-African Partner Access Bank. As leaders of many of the world’s top companies, co-chairs Chuck Robbins, Chairman and CEO of Cisco; Jane Fraser, CEO of Citi; James Quincey, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company; Ed Bastian, CEO of Delta Air Lines; Michael Rapino, CEO of Live Nation; Marc Pritchard, CBO of P&G; and Hans Vestberg, CEO of Verizon will work together to engage the private sector to help achieve the campaign’s priority policy goals. Lorraine Twohill, CMO of Google and Mindy Grossman, CEO of WW International are also supporting leaders of Global Citizen’s Recovery Plan for the World.
With this and other initiatives, Global Citizen continues to be at the forefront of efforts to contain and end COVID-19. Last year, working in partnership with Lady Gaga, the One World: Together at Home concert mobilised over USD127,9 million in support of healthcare workers on the frontline of the pandemic. And with the Global Goal: Unite for Our Future campaign, Global Citizen and the European Commission secured USD1.5 billion in cash grants and USD5.4 billion in loans, as well as the necessary political support to ensure that everyone, everywhere will have access to COVID-19 testing, treatments and vaccines.
The executive producers of VAX LIVE: The Concert to Reunite the World are Global Citizen, the Ad Council and COVID Collaborative, YouTube Originals, iHeartMedia, Teneo and Live Nation. The executive producers of the VAX LIVE broadcast will be Casey Patterson of Casey Patterson Entertainment and Ken Ehrlich.
The producers include Michele Anthony of Universal Music Group; Michael Rapino, the CEO of Live Nation; John Sykes, the President of Entertainment Enterprises at iHeartMedia; Tom Poleman, the President and Chief Programming Officer at iHeartMedia; Declan Kelly, CEO of Teneo; Rob Light of CAA; Amanda Silverman of The Lede Company; Shawn Sachs and Keleigh Thomas Morgan of Sunshine Sachs; and Diversified Production Services (DPS).
For more information about VAX LIVE: The Concert to Reunite the World, visit globalcitizen.org/vaxlive and follow @glblctzn on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.