Prince Harry gets standing ovation at star-studded Vax Live event

·Features and Health Editor
·3-min read

Prince Harry received a standing ovation after a passionate speech praising the world’s frontline medical workers at the star-studded Vax Live: The Concert To Reunite The World.

It was the Duke of Sussex's first public speaking appearance since his late grandfather Prince Philip’s funeral and since he and wife Meghan Markle - who was not at the concert - gave their interview with Oprah Winfrey in March.

Harry, who was joined by pop royalty including Jennifer Lopez at the concert, also voiced support for India during its devastating Covid outbreak.

"Tonight is a celebration of each of you here, the vaccinated frontline workers in the audience and the millions of frontline heroes around the world," he said.

"You spent the last year battling courageously and selflessly to protect us all. You served and sacrificed, put yourselves in harm’s way, and acted with bravery, knowing the costs. We owe you an incredible debt of gratitude. Thank you.

"We stand in solidarity with the millions of families across India, who are battling a devastating second wave," he added.

Prince Harry gets standing ovation at the Vax Live concert
Prince Harry got a standing ovation after thanking frontline workers. Photo: Getty

Harry took the stage for a second time, and spoke about a cause that is clearly personal: misinformation spreading online.

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"In today's world, we are so connected like a vast nervous system, whether we are online or not. And much like the virus, there are no borders online," he said.

"So when vaccine misinformation and disinformation spreads, magnified on social media and in parts of traditional media, it exposes a collective threat to humanity. I believe that misinformation is a global humanitarian crisis, and the crisis is getting worse."

Prince Harry speaks at the Vax Live concert at SoFi Stadium
Prince Harry came on stage two times during the event. Photo: Getty

Harry served as campaign chair for the event – that urged world leaders to step up, highlighting the importance of vaccine equity – with wife Meghan Markle, who did not make the two-plus hour trip from Montecito as she's (very) pregnant with their second child.

It will air on US television and YouTube on May 8, after being pre-taped in front of thousands of fully vaccinated spectators at a vast California stadium Sunday.

Yahoo Entertainment learned Meghan will be part of the telecast when it airs.

The event also featured video messages from the pope and President Joe Biden and in-person appearances from Hollywood stars such as Ben Affleck and Sean Penn.

Selena Gomez hosted the concert at Inglewood's SoFi Stadium, one of the largest in-person gatherings since March 2020, which also featured performances by Jennifer Lopez, Foo Fighters, J. Balvin and H.E.R.

Jennifer Lopez at the Vax Live concert
Jennifer Lopez performs at the Vax Live concert at SoFi Stadium. Photo: Getty

A glittering J-Lo told fans she had been forced to spend Christmas without her mother for the first time due to the pandemic — before bringing the Lopez matriarch onto an elaborate meadow-themed stage for a feel-good singalong of "Sweet Caroline."

The Foo Fighters were joined by surprise guest Brian Johnson of AC/DC for a rendition of "Back in Black."

"We ain't out of the woods yet... let's work as hard as we can to make sure we can do this" every night, said frontman Dave Grohl.

Additional reporting by Taryn Ryder.

YouTube will stream an extended version on the Global Citizen channel, which will include additional performances and appearances.

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