By DAVE ITZKOFF
NBC Universal said on Thursday morning that it would show a one-hour telethon and concert on its broadcast network and cable television stations on Friday night to benefit Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. The telethon, “Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together,” will be held at NBC’s Rockefeller Plaza studios and hosted by Matt Lauer, the co-host of “Today.” Among the musicians who are scheduled to perform on the telethon are Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Jon Bon Jovi, Sting and Christina Aguilera; Jimmy Fallon, the host of NBC’s “Late Night,” and Brian Williams, the anchor of “NBC Nightly News,” will also appear.
The telethon will be shown simultaneously on NBC, Bravo, CNBC, E!, G4, MSNBC, Style, Syfy and USA, and streamed live on the NBC.com Web site. It will be broadcast live from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern time for the East Coast and on a tape delay for the West Coast. NBC said that money collected from the telethon would be donated to the American Red Cross.
A spokeswoman for NBC Universal said that channels not owned by the company will also be allowed to broadcast the concert. NBC organized a similar benefit after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. That telethon, also hosted by Mr. Lauer, raised $50 million for the Red Cross. A week after NBC’s benefit, another telethon,”Shelter From the Storm,” was broadcast by the major networks and a couple of dozen cable channels. It was similar to a telethon conceived after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, “America: A Tribute to Heroes.” A dozen channels also showed a benefit telethon after the devastating earthquake in Haiti in 2010.
Brian Stelter contributed reporting.