Coldplay, Shakira and Miley Cyrus join world leaders in global coronavirus response concert

Global leaders are joining forces with an international line up of artists – including Shakira, Coldplay and Miley Cyrus – for a historic event on Saturday raising money in the fight against COVID-19.

The initiative marks the conclusion of the Global Goal: Unite For Our Future campaign launched by the EU and activist group Global Citizen to fund research for a coronavirus vaccine and help rebuild communities impacted by the pandemic “in a fair and just way”.

The concert kicked off at 8pm CET. It’s being live-streamed across the world and co-hosted by EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

At the beginning of the event, the actor took the chance to remember George Floyd and address the global issue of racism.

“As we were doing our very best to digest the unprecedented hardships that this new [corona]virus had cost, we also continued to witness another ongoing disease that had plagued our word for decades, centuries even: oppression and inequality. The tragic case of George Floyd was a flashpoint that changed so much. Those devastating 8 minutes and 46 seconds validated the horrendous systemic racism and civil injustice we know to be present in our current reality”.

He was followed by Miley Cyrus, who performed a rendition of Beatles’ classic “Help!” in an empty stadium.

The concert is also featuring Usher, Jennifer Hudson, Justin Bieber and Quavo, J Balvin, Chloe x Halle, Yemi Alade, and Christine and the Queens.

The event is available on the EU Commission’s AV portal and on its Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts, as well as live-streamed on Global Goal Unite’s website and social media pages.

The concert was be preceded by a global pledging summit hosted by Ursula von der Leyen, who thanked on Saturday all those who contributed raising money for the campaign.

International advocates, experts, artists and activists among the likes of Angelique Kidjo, Melinda Gates, Dr. Vin Gupta, Ken Jeong and Kate Upton joined the discussion.

The Global Goal: Unite For Our Future initiative, which has been raising money to develop and deploy coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatment for everybody, had already brought together some of the world’s most famous celebrities on April 19 for the global live-streamed concert One World: Together At Home.

The EU-led initiative Coronavirus Global Response has already raised almost €10 billion.