By Chesney Hearst, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – After the first edition in Rio de Janeiro in 2007, the Live Earth concert event is scheduled to return to the city for a second round, this year on June 18th. The show will be one of seven held during a 24-hour global event that will take place in the hopes of bringing greater awareness to climate change.
Organized by former United States Vice President, activist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Al Gore and Emmy-Award-winning producer and activist Kevin Wall, along with Creative Director, singer-songwriter Pharell Williams, the 2015 edition of Live Earth will reportedly include over a hundred artists performing live shows in all seven continents, including Antarctica.
In addition to Antarctica and Rio, Live Earth 2015 is scheduled to take place in Paris, New York, Beijing, Sydney and Cape Town. While the lineup of performing artists for the six major city shows has not been announced, the final show in Antarctica will be performed by a band of scientists located at a research station on the continent.
The 24-hour global event will reportedly be streamed live by over two hundred television networks and media platforms, with the concerts in each city scheduled to last approximately four to six hours. Organizers are aiming for a combined viewership throughout the day of more than two billion people.
On Wednesday, January 21st, Al Gore and Kevin Wall, joined by Pharell Williams, officially announced the plans for the Live Earth concerts at a press conference held during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
There they stated that the second round of Live Earth concerts would be part of the year-long “Road to Paris” initiative aimed at raising climate change awareness during the lead-up to the United Nations talks scheduled to take place in Paris, France in December of this year.
“It is absolutely crucial that we build public will for an agreement,” said Gore during the press conference. “The purpose is to have a billion voices with one message, to demand climate action now.”
Gore began Live Earth with Wall in 2007 and on July 7th of that year concerts took place across the globe, in Rio de Janeiro (home to two major UN conferences in 1992 and 2012), Sydney, Johannesburg, New Jersey, Tokyo, Kyoto, Shanghai, London, Hamburg, Washington D.C. and Antarctica.
Held on Copacabana Beach, the Rio show featured performances by Lenny Kravitz, Macy Gray, Xuxa, Jota Quest, Marcelo D2, O Rappa and Pharell Williams.
When questioned during the press conference if he would perform this year, Williams hinted at bigger upcoming surprises for the event, saying, “Instead of just having people perform, we literally are going to have humanity harmonize all at once.”