Rihanna Metallica Kendrick Lamar Global Citizen Festival 2016
Rihanna Metallica Kendrick Lamar will lead the Global Citizen Festival 2016. Image credit: Pitchfork

Eight-time Grammy winner Rihanna, “Best Rap Performance” Grammy winner Kendrick Lamar and rock legends Metallica will be the lead stars in 2016 Global Citizen Festival set to take place on Central Park’s Great Lawn in New York City on Saturday, September 24.

Selena Gomez and Major Lazer complete the headliners. The annual music festival will also include guest performances from Usher, Coldplay’s lead singer Chris Martin, Ellie Goulding, Pearl Jam’s lead vocalist Eddie Vedder, Yandel and Yusuf/Cat Stevens.

The event will be hosted by Chelsea Handler, Deborra-Lee, and Hugh Jackman, while Neil Patrick Harris, Priyanka Chopra, Salma Hayek Pinault and Seth Meyers are slated to make special appearances. The event will be broadcasted live on MSNBC. Plus, the organizers have made the event available globally through live-streaming in public locations.

A free event to end extreme poverty

The Global Citizen Festival is a free music event to support efforts directed to end extreme poverty by 2030, as proposed by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), officially known as Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Since its inception, people can earn tickets by contributing to charity acts on the festival’s official website, like watching videos and signing petitions. In the meanwhile, the free event aims to move world leaders to make the difference regarding women’s equality, education, health, water, sanitation, environment, food, hunger, and poverty.

This time around, the festival kick started an education campaign. 50,000 free tickets to the festival will be given out to Global Citizens that carry out actions to promote and ensure quality education is available to all people, especially for refugee children, girls, and women.

“No child should be denied an education because of the circumstances they were born into,” reads the Global Citizen website.

The festival has been around since 2012

The music festival started back in 2012 as an annual show. Chris Martin, the lead singer of British band Coldplay, signed on as creative director of the event for the next 15 years.

Its first edition took place on Saturday, September 29, 2012, with Foo Fighters, The Black Keys, John Legend, Band of Horses, K’naan, and Neil Young & Crazy Horse as headliners.

Stevie Wonder, Kings of Leon, Alicia Keys, and John Mayer performed in 2013. That year’s event specifically promoted global partnerships for education, women’s equality, and health.

The 2014 front line-up included Alicia Keys, fun., The Roots, and Carrie Underwood. Sting also made a special appearance for a song with No Doubt, while Jay-Z sang two duets with Beyoncé.

The last festival, in 2015, was also held on Central Park’s Great Lawn. Most notably, Chris Martin premiered Coldplay’s “Amazing Day” and Eddie Vedder sang “Redemption Song” with Beyoncé. Ed Sheeran and Ariana Grande also performed. Stephen Colbert, Hugh Jackman, Leonardo DiCaprio, Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama made special appearances.

Source: Rolling Stone