Jason Mraz has announced that he will headline a free outdoor concert next month in the country of Myanmar to raise awareness about human trafficking. The artist/activist/healthy living guru is believed to be the first international musician to perform an open-air concert in the country. The event is being organized by MTV EXIT, the music channel’s charitable initiative focused on the human trafficking issue.
“I’m going there with an enormous amount of gratitude and respect, and I hope we can actually make a difference,” Mraz told the Chicago-Sun Times. “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 free concert, which will be held at the base of the beautiful 2600 year-old Shwedagon Pagoda, will be broadcast in Myanmar on national television and will air across MTV’s international network in early 2013. In addition to entertainment, there will also be speakers from the anti-trafficking sector, government and donor community who work to fight human trafficking in the country.
“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,” the 35-year-old told the Chicago-Sun. “Humans as a commodity is a great way to run your business. So I signed on, lent my voice, lent my music to the cause.”
Check out a video of Mraz speaking about the event here.