We Day Vancouver 2012 celebrity lineup

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International children’s charity and educational partner, Free The Children, in partnership with MuchMusic, has announced this year’s lineup of world-renowned speakers and performers from Academy and Grammy Award winner Jennifer Hudson, to Archbishop Desmond Tutu – to inspire and empower more than 40,000 students who have earned their way through service to attend We Day Toronto (Air Canada Centre, September 28) and We Day Vancouver (Rogers Arena, October 18).

Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, singer-songwriter Demi Lovato, Basketball Hall-of-Fame legend Magic Johnson, and Grammy and Juno Award Winner Nelly Furtado, among others, are scheduled to speak and perform. International activists and founders of Free The Children, Craig and Marc Kielburger, will lead the energetic crowd. Both cities will also see a special surprise guest to further excite the crowd of young people.

According to the Canadian youth parents/guardians of 13-17 year olds, as well as 13-17 year olds themselves, almost half of both samples polled feel that today’s youth generation has more of an ability to help others and the world than today’s adult generation. Free The Children’s We Day provides a platform for students to learn about today’s pressing social issues, inspiring youth to become leaders and global citizens and take action on the issues most important to them.

Vancouver – Thursday, October 18, 2012 at the Rogers Arena
• Dr. Holly Branson – Free The Children ambassador and daughter of Sir Richard Branson
• A performance by ONE DROP, a Cirque du Soleil Founder’s initiative
• Premier Christy Clark – Premier of British Columbia
• Shawn Desman – Platinum selling and Juno Award winning recording artist
• Magic Johnson – Basketball Hall of Fame legend
• My name is Kay – Canadian singer and songwriter
• Demi Lovato – Singer-songwriter and X Factor judge
• OneRepublic – Platinum selling, Grammy nominated, American pop/rock band
• Tyler Shaw – 2012 Coca Cola COVERS MuchMusic Video Award winner
• Archbishop Desmond Tutu – Nobel Peace Laureate
• Spencer West – Me to We motivational speaker and Free The Children ambassador

And if you wish to compare venues;

Toronto – Friday, September 28, 2012 at the Air Canada Centre
• A performance by ONE DROP, a Cirque du Soleil Founder’s initiative
• The Honourable Roméo A. Dallaire – Lieutenant-General and author
• Shawn Desman – Platinum selling and Juno Award winning recording artist
• Nelly Furtado – Grammy and Juno Award winner
• Al Gore – Former U.S. Vice President and Nobel Laureate
• Hedley – Performance by multi-platinum, Juno and MMVA Award-winning recording artists
• Jennifer Hudson – Academy and Grammy Award winner
• Tyler Shaw – 2012 Coca Cola COVERS MuchMusic Video Award winner
• Martin Sheen – Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor and activist
• The Canadian Tenors – Canadian multi-platinum vocal group
• Justin Trudeau – Canadian politician and activist
• Spencer West – Me to We motivational speaker and Free The Children ambassador

According to the survey conducted, the local issue Canadian youth interviewed are most passionate about is bullying (25 per cent), following by the environment (21 per cent). We Day aims to shine a spotlight on a wide spectrum of today’s critical issues, from bullying and the environment, to domestic and international poverty, and healthcare.

“The energy at a We Day is indescribable,” said Shawn Desman, Platinum selling and Juno Award winning recording artist. “Similar to last year, I’ve committed to perform in all eight We Day cities. By far, my most favourite part of We Day is the kids, and seeing how excited and motivated they are to get involved and make the world a better place. It’s infectious, and makes me want to do everything I can to help.”

We Day is free of charge to the thousands of students and educators in attendance, thanks to the generous support of sponsors led by National Co-Title Sponsors RBC and TELUS. However, young people in attendance earn their way into the event by committing to take action on at least one local and one global issue through Free The Children’s year long engagement programs.

We Day season will see more than 100,000 in attendance, and millions more watching online at www.muchmusic.com/weday and through the MuchMusic broadcast special premiering on Sunday, November 11 at 7 p.m. ET on MuchMusic and Saturday, November 24 at 7 p.m. ET on CTV.

Felix Kay,
Follow Felix on Twitter: @TheFelixKay

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Felix Kay Entertainment Columnist for Vancity Buzz
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