UPDATE 2/23/2020: Tiffany Haddish, Usher, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Charlamagne Tha God, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Susan Sarandon and Pete Buttigieg have been added to the line-up for Harry Belafonte’s 94th birthday event. Additionally, Jay-Z will receive the Gatekeeper of Truth Award at the livestream celebration.
A live virtual party in honor of actor Harry Belafonte’s 94th birthday will be held on Sunday, February 28th at 7:00 p.m. ET.
The event will feature performances and appearances from Common, Danny Glover, Chuck D, Bernie Sanders with his wife Jane, Stacey Abrams, Aloe Blacc, Tamika D. Mallory, Rev. Al Sharpton, Jackie Cruz, Aja Monet, Mysonne the General, Diane Nash, Carmen Perez-Jordan, DJ Carisma, Bryan Stevenson, Kerry Kennedy, Matt Post, and more.
Proceeds from the Gathering for Harry will benefit the non-profit group the Gathering for Justice, founded by Belafonte in 2005 after he witnessed a news report about a 5-year-old black girl being handcuffed and arrested in her Florida classroom for “being unruly.” The organization’s mission is to build a movement to end child incarceration while working to eliminate the racial inequities that permeate the justice system.
“We have no debate, we have no discussion, we have responses to these issues of race,” Belafonte said in 2012. “And those responses are usually driven by ill-advised conclusions, ill-advised ideas on how to change things. One of the most commonly used instruments to deal with the issue of race is incarceration…I didn’t want to found the Gathering, the Gathering found me. What we do is, in the exchange of information and informing each other, we begin to understand where we have strengths and where we have weaknesses. How do we fix our weaknesses, and how do we broaden our strengths?”
Tickets to the livestream are on sale now, starting at $25 with VIP packages available. The event is sponsored in part by the Hope and Robert F. Smith Family.