- - Sunday, November 18, 2012

Sarah Jessica Parker and Gerard Butler are adding to the star wattage at the Nobel Peace Prize concert.

The actors will be the hosts of the 19th annual event, to be held Dec. 11 in Oslo, The Associated Press reports. Jennifer Hudson and Seal are among the performers.

The European Union captured the prize this year.

Miss Parker said she is honored to “promote the power of peace around the world. Mr. Butler said the European Union has shown “the world what is possible when forces unite in peace” and called the concert a “remarkable celebration of humanity.”

Past winners of the Nobel Peace Prize include Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, former Vice President Al Gore and President Barack Obama.

McCartney, Springsteen to take part in Sandy benefit

Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band and Kanye West will hit the stage at a Superstorm Sandy benefit concert next month at Madison Square Garden.

Madison Square Garden announced Thursday that Billy Joel, The Who, Alicia Keys and Jon Bon Jovi also will perform at the Dec. 12 show, dubbed “12-12-12.” More performers will be announced later.

Proceeds from the concert will go to the Robin Hood Relief Fund to benefit those affected by Sandy in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. Sandy’s assault three weeks ago created widespread damage and power outages throughout the area.

Drug charges dropped against Bon Jovi’s daughter

A central New York prosecutor said drug charges against Jon Bon Jovi’s 19-year-old daughter have been dropped.

Stephanie Bongiovi was found unresponsive by medics after she apparently overdosed on heroin in a Hamilton College dorm early Wednesday.

Town of Kirkland police charged Ms. Bongiovi, of Red Bank, N.J., and another student with possession of a small amount of heroin and marijuana.

Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara said Thursday he was dismissing the charges against both students. Under state law, someone having a drug overdose or seeking help for an overdose victim can’t be prosecuted for having a small amount of heroin or any amount of marijuana.

Mr. Bon Jovi is scheduled to perform a concert to benefit Hamilton on Dec. 5. He has not commented on his daughter.

Judge grants Miley Cyrus 3-year restraining order

A judge has granted Miley Cyrus a three-year civil restraining order against a man convicted of trespassing at her home in Los Angeles.

The stay-away order was granted Friday against Jason Luis Rivera by Superior Court Judge William D. Stewart.

The 40-year-old Rivera was convicted in October of trespassing at the singer’s home and sentenced to 18 months in jail.

He is scheduled to be released in May. Authorities said at the time of the arrest in September that the intruder was carrying scissors and ran into the wall of Miss Cyrus’ home as if trying to break in.

He did not respond to Miss Cyrus’ petition.

The 20-year-old former star of “Hannah Montana” did not attend the hearing. Her attorney Bryan Sullivan declined to comment.

Jason Mraz to perform in historic Myanmar concert

Jason Mraz will make history next month when he performs in Myanmar to raise awareness about human trafficking.

Mr. Mraz will headline a free outdoor concert on Dec. 16 at People’s Square in Yangon, at the base of Shwedagon Pagoda.

The Grammy-winning singer-songwriter is the first international artist to perform an open-air concert in the country since the end of military rule last year. And he is believed to be just the second Western act to perform in the country in decades, joining Ozomatli’s U.S. State Department-sponsored appearance in 2009.

“That’s pretty exciting,” Mr. Mraz said of the history involved, “and I’m going there with an enormous amount of gratitude and respect, and I hope we can actually make a difference. I hope it’s also a testament to the songs. I’ve always wanted my songs to be about healing and self-empowerment, and if this is the way MTV is acknowledging that, then I am incredibly grateful.”

The show will be broadcast on Myanmar national television and will air on MTV’s international network in 2013. Mr. Mraz hosted a similar concert in the Philippines last year. He first became interested in the issue about four years ago when he attended the Freedom Awards, an annual salute to those working against human exploitation put on by the organization Free the Slaves.

“I thought this was something that was abolished when Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, but all it did is become hidden from our view,” Mr. Mraz said in a phone interview from Zurich, Switzerland. “There was a recent estimate that there are about 27 million people enslaved on the planet, certainly due to hard economic times, not just in the Western world but certainly in Third World countries. … So I signed on, lent my voice, lent my music to the cause.”

Myanmar is opening itself to the world since a military junta ceded power to a new elected government last year. President Thein Sein’s government has pushed the country toward democracy.

Mr. Mraz said there is concern predators will prey on the vulnerable in this time of great flux. The concert offers an opportunity to “educate, empower and engage.” The 35-year-old singer said he plans to tailor his show to the message.

“I do curate a set list that I feel is going to be part of that educate, empower and engage [theme],” he said. “Obviously songs like ‘I’m Yours,’ ‘I Won’t Give Up’ are great examples. Or ‘93 Million Miles’ is a new one where it’s about believing in yourself. And a lot of my songs are about that, about believing in yourself and really going for your dreams. Those are the kinds of songs I’ll be playing at that show.

Compiled from Web and wire reports

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