Stars including Charlize Theron, Bono and Naomi Campbell braved the pouring rain to attend a memorial service for Nelson Mandela on Tuesday (10Dec13). The Oscar-winning actress and the U2 frontman joined the supermodel and thousands of mourners at the public service for the revered civil rights icon in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Global leaders including U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron also attended the event at the FNB Stadium, and U.S. President Barack Obama prompted a huge cheer as he rose to give a speech to the assembled gathering.
Mandela died from a lung infection last Thursday (05Dec13), aged 95.
"He called me a friend bit I was really a fan; that's probably a fair description. We spent lots of time together, I'm pleased to say." Bono on his late friend Nelson Mandela. The U2 rocker will attend the former South African leader's memorial service in Pretoria on Tuesday (10Dec13).
U2 star Bono has penned a tribute essay for Time magazine honouring his friend Nelson Mandela, who died on Thursday (05Dec13). The rocker reveals that the former South African leader was his mentor and hero - and the leading figure behind his decision to become an activist for world change as a teenager.
In the 1051-word piece, titled The Man Who Could Not Cry, which was published on Time's website hours after the news of Mandela's death was released, Bono writes, "As an activist I have pretty much been doing what Nelson Mandela tells me since I was a teenager."
The singer, who has become a leading light in the fight against AIDS and world poverty and an international rights advocate, calls Mandela a "forceful presence" in his life, adding his idol was a "hardheaded realist" and a "compromiser without being compromised".
And he recalls confronting Mandela about accepting money and friendship from his former foes, like late British leader Margaret Thatcher.
He writes, "He told me once how Margaret Thatcher had personally donated £20,000 to his foundation. 'How did you do that?' I gasped. The Iron Lady, who was famously frugal, kept a tight grip on her purse. 'I asked,' he said with a laugh. 'You'll never get what you want if you don't ask.'
"Then he lowered his voice conspiratorially and said her donation had nauseated some of his cohorts: 'Didn't she try to squash our movement?' they complained. His response: 'Didn't (former South African leader F.W.) De Klerk crush our people like flies? And I'm having tea with him next week... He'll be getting the bill.'"
Bono also recalls one touching moment with his late friend - when he joined Mandela at his former prison home on Robben Island.
He adds, "It was... in the courtyard outside the cell in which he had spent 18 of his 27 years in prison. He was explaining why he’d decided to use his inmate’s number, 46664, to rally a response to the AIDS pandemic, claiming so many African lives.
"One of his cellmates told me that the price Mandela paid for working in the limestone mine was not bitterness or even the blindness that can result from being around the bright white reflection day after day. Mandela could still see, but the dust damage to his tear ducts had left him unable to cry.
"For all this man’s farsightedness and vision, he could not produce tears in a moment of self-doubt or grief. He had surgery in 1994 to put this right. Now, he could cry. Today, we can."
Stars including Katy Perry, Beyonce, Eminem and One Direction have donated songs to an album raising funds for typhoon relief efforts in the Philippines. Altogether, 39 tracks have been donated to the Songs for the Philippines compilation record, which will be released via online retailer iTunes on Monday (02Dec13).
All proceeds will be donated to the Philippines Red Cross, a charity providing essential help to victims of Typhoon Haiyan, which battered the south-east Asian country earlier this month (Nov13), killing more than five thousand people and leaving many more homeless.
Other stars who have contributed to the album include U2, Justin Bieber, Madonna and Bruno Mars.
The songs that eventually made up Imagine Dragons' 2012 hit album Night Visions were originally intended for Broadway musical Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark. The show features a score by U2 rockers Bono and The Edge.
U2 frontman Bono is convinced his troubled Spider-Man musical will survive for years to come and become a huge success after it closes in New York. The curtain will fall on Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark in January (14) after three years on stage during which it suffered numerous delays and setbacks, as well as a ballooning budget which made it the most expensive Broadway production of all time.
Producers plan to open the show in Las Vegas and in Europe, and Bono, who wrote the score along with his U2 bandmate The Edge, believes the musical still has a chance to be a great success.
He says, "When you think of the difficult birth that we had with Turn Off the Dark... It's worked out so well. Three hugely successful years, and then it's off to Germany, it's off to Las Vegas. It was a lot more expensive than it should have been, but in the long term it will... do very, very well."
The production was plagued with cast injuries during its run, and producer Michael Cohl recently revealed theatre bosses made the difficult decision to close the show after the troubles left them unable to obtain the necessary insurance.
Bono and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin helped raise $26 million (£17.3 million) for charity by singing at a star-studded auction in New York on Saturday (23Nov13). The U2 frontman teamed with top designers Sir Jonathon Ive and Marc Newson to put together a collection of specially designed luxury items, from companies such as Hermes and Apple, for Jony and Marc's (RED) Auction at Sotheby's in Manhattan.
The event included a performance by Bono and Martin, who joined forces to sing a medley of U2's Beautiful Day and Lou Reed's Perfect Day, with the Coldplay star playing a custom-built red grand piano which was sold for $1.9 million (£1.3 million).
Other items featured in the sale included a storm trooper helmet from the Star Wars franchise signed by George Lucas which sold for $245,000 (£163,333).
The auction was attended by more than 1,000 guests including Harrison Ford, Meg Ryan, Courtney Love and Hayden Panettiere, and it raised around $13 million (£8.7 million) for Global Fund to Fight AIDs, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
The final total came in at around $26 million (£17.3 million) after executives of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation agreed to double the sales figure.
WENNComebacks from one of the world's biggest stadium rock bands, the original M.I.A. and Victoria Beckham's former arch-nemesis all feature in this week's guide to the best recently-unveiled tracks.Neneh Cherry – "Blank Project"Although Neneh Cherry has kept herself busy via collaborations with jazz trio The Thing and trip-hop collective Cirkus, it's been 17 years since her last solo LP, Woman. An intense Four Tet-produced account of a love-hate relationship, the title track from her forthcoming fourth studio effort proves she remains as compelling as ever.Solange – "Cash In"After kicking off the year in style with the stunning True EP, the most interesting Knowles sister now ends it with another gorgeous slice of leftfield R&B taken from her Saint Heron compilation – the first release on her own boutique label Saint Records.Sophie Ellis-Bextor – "Young Blood"Capitalising on her current run on Strictly Come Dancing, the UK's most well-spoken pop star abandons the elegant electro she made her name with in favour of a lush and cinematic baroque-pop ballad which certainly bodes well for her upcoming fifth album Wanderlust.Royksopp – "Something In My Heart"Accompanied by the yearning James Blake-esque tones of The Irrepressibles' Jamie McDermott, the Norwegian duo confirm their status as kings of electro-pop heartbreak with a typically dreamy blend of chugging synths, melancholic melodies and slow-motion beats.U2 – "Ordinary Love"Following the commercial disappointment of 2009's experimental No Line On The Horizon, U2 now go back to basics with their contribution to the new Nelson Mandela biopic. Produced by Danger Mouse, "Ordinary Love" combines a resonant piano hook with The Edge's familiar echo-drenched riffs a to produce the band's most quietly affecting single in years.
U2 rocker Bono has teamed up with acclaimed designers Sir Jonathan Ive and Marc Newson to curate a unique collection of innovative masterpieces to auction off for charity. Ive, who created the iPod for Apple, and industrial designer Newson have helped the philanthropic musician pick out items for Saturday's (23Nov13) (RED) sale at Sotheby's New York, and they have even collaborated on two new products just for the auction - an aluminium desk produced by California's Neal Feay Studios, and a Leica Digital Rangefinder Camera, worth an estimated $500,000 (£333,330).
They have also customised a Steinway & Sons Parlor Grand Piano, a 2012 Range Rover and a Fiat car.
Other products due to go under the hammer include a bottle of vintage Dom Perignon champagne from 1966, a pair of classic Apple earphones in solid rose gold, and a bespoke pair of Christian Louboutin boots in patent red leather, which are priced between $20,000 (£13,330) and $30,000 (£20,000).
Ive tells Britain's The Telegraph newspaper, "Each piece represents the value of thoughtful design. What we create for each other is not only a comment on our culture but of course in many ways defines it."
Proceeds from the sale, organised by officials at Bono's (RED) organisation, will be donated to The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the rocker is confident his continued focus on the battle against HIV and AIDS will result in a cure in the near future.
He tells U.S. breakfast show Good Morning America: "It's a political tool, (RED) is a tool, not just to raise money, as it will, but to raise awareness, which helps keep the fight against HIV/AIDS a political priority. This disease has cost 34 million lives and there's a chance, in the next few years, if we stay concentrated, that we could see the beginning of the end of AIDS. Who'd have thought?"
Producers behind Broadway's beleaguered Spider-Man musical made the difficult decision to close the show after a series of onstage injuries left them unable to obtain the necessary insurance. Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark, which features a score by U2 stars Bono and The Edge, opened in June, 2011 after months of delays and setbacks, including the exit of director/writer Julie Taymor.
A number of castmembers also sustained nasty injuries during previews, including Spider-Man stunt double Kevin Aubin, who broke both wrists, actress Natalie Mendoza, who left the show after suffering concussion, and Christopher Tierney, who underwent back surgery and months of rehabilitation after a serious stage fall.
Producers recently announced the curtain will fall on the musical in January (14), and producer Michael Cohl has now revealed insurance issues are to blame for the closure, telling the New York Post, "We don't have injury insurance, so we have to close the show," while jokingly referencing U.S. President Barack Obama's healthcare reforms by adding, "We tried to get on the website for Obamacare, but we couldn't."
However, Cohl is convinced the musical, which holds the title of Broadway's most expensive production, will eventually be a huge success as bosses plan to move the show to Las Vegas.
He adds, "I guess we'll call the money we spent in New York 'research and development'... I think we've established a really good brand that will be even better the second, the third, the fourth time out."