A global pandemic hasn’t stopped Hollywood from finding new ways to pump out live entertainment.
The coronavirus pandemic has seen humanity come together and support one another (for the most part), and celebrities have spent April doing their part to raise spirits: whether on national television, Youtube, Instagram and even Fortnite.
Digital concerts have begun to spread like wildfire. On April 16, Ryan Seacrest hosted “The Disney Family Singalong” on ABC. Ironically, the youngest member of my household refused to watch while my mother and I cuddled up to see some of the biggest stars perform classic Disney hits. Each performer recorded their song from their own home, of course, which gave them a down to earth look that the public rarely sees. I won’t lie, my inner child was ready to bust a move as the cast of “High School Musical” reunited to perform “We’re All In This Together.”
Similarly, Several musicians partnered with Global Citizen to support the World Health Organization through a virtual concert, “One World: Together At Home.” The event consisted of a 6-hour concert on Youtube before the main event, a global television broadcast. From Billie Eilish to Paul McCartney, there was a performance for every music fan. Public service announcements and the global acts of kindness done by many were woven into the broadcast in-between performances. It was impossible not to shed a tear as the hard work of hospital workers was highlighted on the screen, but the waterworks came when Lady Gaga, Celine Dion, John Legend, Andrea Bocelli and Lang Lang united in an angelic rendition of “The Prayer.” The concert raised a whopping $127 million for coronavirus relief.
This year’s Easter and Passover left many people home and unable to gather with their families. To alleviate the loneliness, Idina Menzel, Josh Groban, Finn Wolfhard, Ben Platt, Billy Porter and many others teamed up to create “Saturday Night Seder.” The Youtube video was like a holiday gathering with each member in their own home performing or explaining the meaning and relevance of Passover. Passover is a holiday that deals with the struggles and survival of the Jewish people, which serves as a hopeful message today for the many who have lost loved ones and jobs during the pandemic. It was also heartwarming to read the comments section of the video, where people from various faiths discussed their gratitude for its meaning and performance. The show helped raise money for the CDC Foundation.
Other celebrities have taken upon themselves to find ways to entertain. Singer and Actress Miley Cyrus created “Bright Minded: Live with Miley” using Instagram’s live feature to create a talk show meant to bring happiness in a time of crisis. Cyrus’ weekly show features guest stars, such as Paris Hilton and Demi Lovato, with topics centered around mental health, pop culture and fame. Meanwhile, Rapper Travis Scott recently partnered with the popular video game Fortnite, to make a concert of his songs but in an animated video game. The performance was filled with stunning visuals and drew in over 12 million viewers. Just as Gaga referred to the One World concert as “a love letter to the world,” these new forms of live entertainment usher joy into our homes.