Sting for tsunami victims

PERTH, Australia: Veteran rocker Sting aims to raise more than $ 7,62,000 for tsunami victims with a benefit concert at one of Australia’s top vineyards.

The owners of Leeuwin Estate in Western Australia said the former Police front man agreed to perform for free at the February 10 concert after being forced to cancel a gig in tsunami-stricken Sri Lanka.

The outdoor concert in the renowned Margaret River wine producing region will have an audience of 6,000 wine buffs paying at least Australian $ 150 for admission, with organisers and support staff all donating their wages and bar takings to relief funds.

Leeuwin Estate owner Tricia Horgan said that Sting was already booked to appear on February 12 and 13 but jumped at the chance to fit in an extra charity show after his Sri Lankan appearance was cancelled.

“We made an invitation to him to come down and perform here — in lieu of Sri Lanka — a charity concert for the benefit of people who have lost everything up there,” she said. “I got an immediate response from his tour manager with the thumbs up. I’m not all that surprised, Sting has a reputation for being a real giver.”

Horgan said money raised from the concert will be divided among the major aid agencies with the majority directed to UNICEF, for whom Sting’s wife, Trudy, is a goodwill ambassador. — Agencies