The February 2nd Mandela SOS concert, which was to raise money and awareness about the AIDS epidemic in Africa, has been cancelled due to production issues. Bono, Macy Gray, Nelly Furtado, Queen, Coldplay, Shaggy, Ludacris, Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens) and others were scheduled to perform at Robben Island prison in South Africa, where Nobel Peace Prize winner and world civil rights leader Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for eighteen years in the 1960s and Seventies.
Dave Stewart, the event's musical director, Bono and the late Joe Strummer co-wrote the song "48864" especially for the event. The title was a reference to Mandela's prisoner number during his incarceration.
While the concert was to be held for 3,000 fans at Robben Island, a concurrent performance was to take place at the larger Green Point Stadium in Capetown, South Africa. Some artists were to play both venues, and footage from Robben Island was also to be beamed onto screens at the stadium. The event was also to be televised worldwide.
No further information was available about the cause of the cancellation or a possible rescheduling at press time.