From the Stage of the Oscars to a Concert in Kiev: Jared Leto Goes to Ukraine

Last night, the war zone that’s been the city of Kiev took a musical turn as bands descended into Ukraine to show solidarity and support for the brave protesters who refuse to back down.

Among the participants was Jared Leto, recent Oscar winner and front man of the band 30 Seconds To Mars.  Just two weeks ago Leto acknowledged the protesters in Ukraine and Argentina Venezuela during his Oscar speech, pledging solidarity stating:

To all the dreamers out there around the world watching this tonight in places like Ukraine and Venezuela. I want to to say we are here, and as you struggle to make your dreams happen and live the impossible, we are thinking of you tonight.

Prior to the concert the actor/ musician visited vigils constructed for protesters who had been killed in the recent police clashes and then serenaded the square.

Offering his encouragement and leading the crowd in chants of “Glory to Ukraine” Leto told the crowd, to thunderous applause:

There’s no price too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.

Leto went on to advocate on behalf of love and peace.

Meanwhile heads of states and diplomats alike are scrambling to prevent a Russian invasion of Crimea.

Leto’s speech in Kiev last night was followed by a performance of the song The Kill, which features lyrics that include:

What if I wanted to fight
Beg for the rest of my life
What would you do?
You say you wanted more
What are you waiting for?
I’m not running from you

I understand that there tends to be a certain amount of cynicism regarding celebrities getting involved in complex international affairs.  But in truth, there’s power using music to lift peoples’ spirits.  It’s hard to measure the impact of a concert but witnessing the energy of the crowd in the video above, you can see it mattered.

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Sara Haile-Mariam

Sara Haile-Mariam