The two-hour fundraising effort, held at Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena, was set up with the aim of raising funds for the Disasters Emergency Committee’s (DEC) humanitarian appeal.
Special guest appearances included Ukraine’s 2016 Eurovision champion Jamala, who gave a spine-tingling performance of her song “1984”, and a tribute to members of the press reporting on the conflict from broadcasting legend Trevor McDonald. There was also a message from Billie Eilish and her brother/songwriting partner Finneas O’Connell, who shared their support for those taking part in the event and urged viewers to donate.
Here are the biggest talking points from the concert.
Stellar lineup helps raise more than £12m for DEC’s humanitarian appeal
The full lineup at Concert for Ukraine consisted of Snow Patrol, Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabello, Emeli Sande, Gregory Porter, Anne Marie, Paloma Faith, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Becky Hill, The Kingdom Choir, Manic Street Preachers, and Tom Odell.
Together with some special guests, these artists helped raise £12.2m (at the time of writing), which will go towards the DEC’s humanitarian appeal for Ukrainian refugees.
Trevor McDonald delivers a special tribute to members of the press
Early on in the concert, broadcasting legend Sir Trevor McDonald read a statement thanking the journalists, producers and camera crews risking their lives to report on the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
“We’re here tonight because of the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ukraine,” he began. “The reason we know so much about it is because of the daily reports we read in the press, see online and watch on our TV screens.
“Never in my lifetime did I ever think I’d see such scenes of destruction and despair. We see them right now because there are [people] all risking their lives to bring us uncensored accounts of what they see and hear.”
He continued: “This is never easy. It requires bravery. It requires fortitude. And sadly same of our colleagues have been injured, and some more sadly have lost their lives.”
McDonald concluded by paying tribute to “everyone working in Ukraine” to provide news and updates, “even in the most challenging of circumstances”.
Ed Sheeran and Camila Cabello debut live performance of new single “Bam Bam”
“We’re all praying tonight for the peace and safety of the people of Ukraine,” Camila Cabello said, after a poignant rendition of Coldplay’s “Fix You”.
“Thank you so much for being part of this super important fundraiser and please donate anything you can.”
She then introduced Ed Sheeran for the first ever live performance of their 2022 duet, “Bam Bam”.
Rob Rinder delivers a special report
Robert Rinder, who last week travelled to the Ukraine border to help the grandparents of his Strictly Come Dancing partner Ukrainian star Oksana Platero, spoke with aid workers and refugees in the midst of the crisis.
“If you want to know where your money is going, just look behind me,” he said, gesturing at a hall filled with makeshift beds.
“Frightened kids. Blankets. Sleeping bags. This could be you. This is all of us.”
Manic Street Preachers perform protest song “If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next”
Welsh rockers Manic Street Preachers delivered a searing rendition of their 1998 single “If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next”. The track was inspired by the Spanish Civil War and the Welsh volunteers who travelled to fight with the Spanish Republic.
The lyrics include the verse: “Bullets for your brain today But we’ll forget it all again Monuments put from pen to paper Turns me into a gutless wonder.”
The performance followed a special message from US pop star Billie Eilish and her brother/collaborator Finneas. Eilish apologised for not being able to be at the concert in person, but urged people to donate to the appeal and sent her support to the victims of the Ukraine-Russia conflict.
The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered.
The liveblog has now closed
Fans wait to see Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabello and more perform at Concert for Ukraine
ITV is hosting a special concert in aid of the current humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.
The event which is being held on Tuesday (29 March) will be a two-hour fundraiser concert raising money for the humanitarian appeal as Russia continues its invasion of Ukraine.
The effort has been set up with the aim of raising funds for the Disasters Emergency Committee’s (DEC) humanitarian appeal.
“My heart is breaking for the people of Ukraine,” Cabello said. “As refugees from Ukraine join millions of other displaced people around the globe, we all have a responsibility.
“One of the biggest needs is to get funds to organisations who can serve these communities directly, so we’re focusing our efforts on doing that as quickly as we can.”
The event will be held at Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena
Ukrainian singer and Eurovision 2016 winner Jamala joins Concert for Ukraine lineup
In a last-minute addition to the lineup, Ukraine singer Jamala will perform at tonight’s Concert for Ukraine.
Jamala (real name Susana Alimivna Jamaladinova) will join Anne Marie, Becky Hill, Camila Cabello, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Ed Sheeran, Emeli Sandé, Gregory Porter, The Kingdom Choir, Paloma Faith, Manic Street Preachers, Snow Patrol and Tom Odell at the two-hour fundraiser event, which is raising money for the DEC humanitarian appeal in Ukraine.
In 2016, Jamala represented Ukraine at the Eurovision Song Contest in Sweden, going on to win the annual international event. She has released six studio albums within the last 10 years.
Her performance will take place six years after she won over Eurovision audiences with her song “1994”. The lyrics addressed Soviet leader Joseph Stalin’s deportation of hundreds of thousands of people from her Black Sea homeland of Crimea, in World War Two.
“When strangers are coming, they come to your house. They kill you all and say ‘We’re not guilty’,” Jamala sang in the sombre anthem.
Jamala is now a refugee herself, having fled Russian president Vladimir Putin’s invasion, which drove her and her children to seek shelter outside Ukraine.
“On 24 February, my husband woke me up and told me that the war had started and that Russia had attacked us. At that moment, I was shocked. It felt like a nightmare,” she told Reuters in an interview in Istanbul.
The 38-year-old, whose real name is Susana Jamaladinova, sheltered in a Kyiv bomb shelter before escaping to Turkey with her two children – leaving her husband to fight the approaching Russian army.
Read more here:
Jamala, a Crimean Tatar, won Eurovision in 2016
Concert for Ukraine – why is the charity fundraiser taking place?
Some background information on where the funds raised by Concert for Ukraine are going...
“ITV, STV and Livewire Pictures are joining forces with the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) and the Media & Entertainment group Global to bring together names from the world of music for a unique event spreading a message of hope and support, and most importantly, raising funds for the ongoing DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal,” the event’s press release explains.
“The live show will broadcast across ITV, STV, ITV Hub and STV Player and is produced by Livewire Pictures. Global, the Media & Entertainment Group, is joining as media partner, and Marks & Spencer will be headline sponsors for the broadcast. The concert will take place at the Resorts World Arena, Birmingham.”
All sponsorship and advertising revenue generated from the broadcast of the event (primetime across both linear and simulcast) will also be donated by ITV to the DEC appeal. The event is expected to raise over £3m.
Last week, chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak confirmed that the UK government would donate the VAT on each ticket back to the appeal, meaning that over £250,000 has already been promised through ticket sales.
Snow Patrol kick off Concert for Ukraine with performance of ‘Run'
Here we go! Your hosts tonight are Marvin Humes, Emma Bunton and Roman Kemp. The goal is to raise as much money as possible for the DEC’s humanitarian effort.
We’re kicking off with Snow Patrol, performing “Run”, one of the most emotional songs from the Irish rock band’s canon.
Here are some of the lyrics:
Have heart, my dear We’re bound to be afraid Even if it’s just for a few days Making up for all this mess
A reminder, the link below contains all the info you need on how to donate:
Event will include performances by Ed Sheeran, Nile Rodgers, Camila Cabello, Snow Patrol and Tom Odell
From my colleagues’ Arpan Rai, Tom Batchelor, Lamiat Sabin report on the latest events from the Russia-Ukraine crisis:
This could lead to Ukraine accepting neutral status in return for Russian troops’ withdrawal from the country. But US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said he has not seen “signs of real seriousness” from Russia in the pursuit of peace.
It comes as the Russian defence ministry promised to reduce military activity near Kyiv to foster conditions needed for further peace talks.
Meanwhile, Ukraine has accused Russian occupiers of “kidnapping” more than 70 people from the destroyed Mariupol children’s and maternity hospital to Russian territory. Mariupol city council wrote on Telegram: “The occupiers continue to kidnap residents of Ukrainian Mariupol.
“More than 70 people were forcibly taken out of maternity hospital No. 2 in the Levoberezhny district - these are medical personnel and patients.”
Russia invades Ukraine - latest updates
Viewers tuning in to the live broadcast will be able to donate from 8pm – here’s how to do it:
- Online: dec.org.uk
- Phone: 0370 60 60 900
- SMS: To donate £10 text ‘CRISIS’ to 70150. Texts cost £10 plus the standard network charge and the whole £10 goes to the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal. You must be 16 or over and please ask the bill payer’s permission. For full terms and conditions and more information go to www.dec.org.uk
- Or donate over the counter at any high street bank or post office or send a cheque by post to Post: DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal, PO Box 999, London EC3A 3AA.
Emeli Sande sings of ‘Brighter Days'
British soul singer Emeli Sande performs an uplifting rendition of her song “Brighter Days”, backed by the excellent Kingdom Choir.
Trevor McDonald pays tribute to journalists reporting from Ukraine
A special appearance from broadcasting legend Trevor McDonald, who said:
“We’re here tonight because of the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ukraine. The reason we know so much about it is because of the daily reports we read in the press, see online and watch on our TV screens.
“Never in my lifetime did I ever think I’d see such scenes of destruction and despair. We see them right now because there are [people] all risking their lives to bring us uncensored accounts of what they see and here
“This is never easy. It requires bravery. It requires fortitude. And sadly same of our colleagues have been injured, and some more sadly have lost our lives
“And so on behalf of us all, I’d like to pay tribute to everyone woking in Ukraine, and to thank you for bringing us the news, even in the most challenging of circumstances.”
McDonald then introduced a report from ITV’s own Geraint Vincent, who described how the refugee crisis in Ukraine has grown to a “staggering size”. Around 10 million Ukrainians have now been forced from their homes.
Concert for Ukraine performer Nile Rodgers explains why he’s taking part
Nile Rodgers has explained why he wanted to take part in Concert for Ukraine.
“I was socialised to care about people so I have done a number of these types of events,” he told Heart radio.
“But what is really very very near and dear to my heart is that so many of my friends, so many of my colleagues are Ukrainian. People who work for me, it’s a huge number.”
He added: “I talk to them everyday about their parents and their family and people who are still in Ukraine, and I just want to do anything I can possibly do to help.”
Read more about tonight’s lineup here:
The event will be held at Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena
Anne-Marie takes to the stage with rendition of ‘Beautiful'
Next up we have the wonderful Anne Marie performing her single “Beautiful” backed by a strings section.
The full lineup tonight consists of Snow Patrol, Ed Sheeran, Camila Cabello, Emeli Sande, Gregory Porter, Paloma Faith, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Becky Hill, The Kingdom Choir, Manic Street Preachers, and Tom Odell.
The concert for Ukraine is being held at Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena. Those who don’t have a ticket can watch the live broadcast on ITV, STV, ITV Hub, and STV Player.
A reminder, you can find out how to donate to the DEC’s humanitarian appeal here.
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