Nearly 20 years after producing the benefit anthem “We Are the World,” Quincy Jones is organizing We Are the Future, a massive charity concert in Rome featuring Jay-Z, Norah Jones and Stevie Wonder, among others.
Jones is still finalizing the lineup, but so far LL Cool J, Josh Groban, Herbie Hancock and Latin star Juanes are also on board, as well as Oprah Winfrey, Muhammad Ali, Chris Tucker, dancer Savion Glover and the casts of “Stomp” and “Cirque du Soleil,” according to Jones’ spokesperson.
The concert will be staged May 16 at the Circus Maximus grounds near the Colosseum, the site of Rome’s ancient chariot races. Jones chose the location to make the point that children are being born into violent times. He also considered Jerusalem and a location in Jordan beside the Red Sea.
We Are the Future will benefit Jones’ Listen Up Foundation, which raises funds and awareness for young victims of violence.
Organizers are expecting more than a million people at the event, which will feature 2,000 children in various indigenous costumes linking hands. Other activities are being planned to bring adversaries, such as Palestinians and Israelis, together.
Also assembling at We Are the Future will be mayors from 60 cities around the world, who will meet with children from war zones to teach them about government.
Jones hopes to broadcast the event worldwide and is already negotiating with an unnamed U.S. network and Arabic broadcaster al Jazeera.