The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are having a busy month.
Named as “icons”, Harry and Meghan appeared together in their first cover magazine photo shoot last week for Time magazine’s 100 most influential people.
This weekend, the couple are heading to New York, where they’ll make their first public appearance together since the arrival of their second child Lilibet in June.
On September 25, (3am Sunday, AEST), they’ll step out on the Great Lawn in Central Park for the Global Citizen Live’s broadcast of performances from the world’s top music acts.
The event will be streamed live across six continents to focus on vaccine equity, famine and climate change.
In a statement on its website, Global Citizen said: “Now two of the strongest voices on vaccine equity are joining the once-in-a-generation event … Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex.”
“Prince Harry and Meghan will join the 24-hour global broadcast event live from the Great Lawn in New York City’s Central Park to continue their urgent work with world leaders in the pursuit of global vaccine equity to end the COVID-19 pandemic for everyone, everywhere.”
The royals are in for a treat.
Coldplay, Billie Eilish, Camila Cabello, Jennifer Lopez and Shawn Mendes will perform, with special guest appearances by Alessia Cara, Burna Boy and Cyndi Lauper.
Reminiscent of the Bob Geldof-inspired Band Aid super group concerts and record re-releases of Do They Know It’s Christmas, the ground-breaking effort back then raised close to $200 million to raise money to fight famine in Ethiopia.
Global Citizen Live goes one step further in addressing 21st century issues.
They’ve held previous incarnations including Global Citizen’s Vax Live: The Concert to Reunite the World (the Sussexes were co-chairs) at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in May, where artists performed in aid of the international COVID vaccination effort at the SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.
This time round, a star-studded line-up of musicians across the world will also focus on climate change and famine, as well as vaccine equity.
The rundown reads like a who’s who from the world of music. The concerts will be free-ticketed and COVID-compliant.
Los Angeles: Stevie Wonder, Adam Lambert, Chloe x Halle, Demi Lovato, H.E.R. and 5 Seconds of Summer
Paris: Ed Sheeran, Elton John, Doja Cat, DJ Snake, Black Eyed Peas, Stormzy, Christine and the Queens
London: Duran Duran, Kylie Minogue, Moonlight, Nile Rodgers and Chic, and Rag’n’Bone Man
Sydney: Delta Goodrem (more to be announced)
BTS, Usher, Andrea Bocelli, Green Day, Keith Urban, Lorde, Metallica and Ricky Martin will round out the broadcast.
It’s not the first time the royals have “raised their voices” about vaccine equity.
They penned a letter to Big Pharma CEOs at the time of the VAX Live concert and again, to celebrate their son Archie’s second birthday, they led a fundraising push for vaccines in low-income countries.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated health, social, and economic inequality globally,” they wrote. “The global vaccine rollout thus far further deepens these disparities, with the poorest and most marginalised populations most adversely impacted.”
Prince Harry said on the VAX Live stage: “The virus does not respect borders, and access to the vaccine cannot be determined by geography.
“It must be accepted as a basic right for all and that is our starting point.”
The Global Citizen Live global event coincides with the UN general assembly, before the G20 meeting in October and the COP26 meeting in Glasgow in November to address climate change.
“The once-in-a-generation day of global unity will call on world leaders, philanthropists and corporations to defend the planet and defeat poverty to take action on climate change, famine and vaccine equity,” it said.
Its mission is to trigger world leaders to deliver one billion vaccines to developing countries, food for 41 million on the brink of famine, and the planting of one billion trees to stop temperatures rising above 1.5 degrees Celsius.
Specifically, they’re calling on G7 countries (the world’s wealthiest nations) and the European Union to immediately support calls for a “waiver on COVID-19 vaccine intellectual property rights”.
India will once again feature in the broadcast after COVID-19 spread across the country in April.
For more information about how to watch and stream Global Citizen Live, visit www.globalcitizen.org