The 30th annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Awards Viewing Party took place Sunday, March 27, at West Hollywood Park, LA, hosted by 12-time GRAMMY Award-winning singer/songwriter/actress Lady Gaga, Emmy, Tony, and GRAMMY Award-winning artist Billy Porter and Emmy Award-winning actor Eric McCormack, alongside CEO of Rocket Entertainment and chairman of the Elton John AIDS Foundation David Furnish.
The star-studded gala featured a sparkling performance by six-time GRAMMY Award-winning artist Brandi Carlile and raised $8.6 million for the Foundation’s lifesaving work to end AIDS.
Among the crowd of supporters, the Foundation welcomed Demi Lovato, Kevin Costner, Zooey Deschanel, Donatella Versace, Fran Drescher, Patricia Arquette, Christina Hendricks, Chris Pine, Lucy Hale, Heidi Klum, Chris Sullivan and Chrissy Metz, Andrew Rannells, Sofia Richie, Liam Payne, Beck, Bobby Berk, Emily Hampshire and other distinguished guests. To the delight of the attendees, Elton John joined via satellite from his rescheduled Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour stop in Lincoln, Nebraska, to express his appreciation for their support and treat the crowd to a special performance of “Your Song” and “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” Guests were also treated to Limited Edition Elton John Eyewear “GOLD DUST” frames sold exclusively at Walmart in partnership with Elton John AIDS Foundation, to wear alongside Elton during his live-streamed performance. Capping off the evening, guests were treated to a full performance by Brandi Carlile and a duet with surprise guest artist, Jake Wesley Rogers, who covered Elton John’s classic song, “Rocket Man.”
The 2022 Academy Awards Viewing Party aligns with the 30th anniversary of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, and also marks the Foundation’s return to live events. Since the gala’s inception in 1992, the Party has supported the Foundation’s efforts by raising more than $86 million for its lifesaving programs. All funds raised support the Foundation’s network of partners and local experts across four continents to challenge discrimination, prevent infections and provide treatment, as well as influencing governments to end AIDS.
“I’m so grateful to my friends Lady Gaga, Billy Porter and Eric McCormack for joining David in hosting such an incredible evening, and of course Brandi Carlile for bringing down the house with an electrifying performance,” says Sir Elton John, Founder, Elton John AIDS Foundation. “Most of all, I’m thankful to all who attended and participated to ensure that we can continue our lifesaving work to end AIDS. I could feel the love and support all the way from Lincoln, Nebraska!”
Chef Wayne Elias and Crumble Catering designed and prepared the dinner for the evening, and the live auction was hosted by Simon de Pury. During the high-energy live auction, one of the highest selling lots represented the ultimate fan journey from past to present: two lucky winners received one of Terry O’Neill’s iconic images from the 1975 concert, and VIP tickets to the final Dodgers Stadium performance this November, Elton’s final performance in the U.S. Adding to the excitement was the sale of an original Andy Warhol, which depicts one of the most famous icons of New York- the Statue of Liberty.
“Even though Elton was not able to be with us in person, we were so happy to bring Elton to the Oscar Party while he performed live from Nebraska,” says David Furnish, Chairman of the Elton John AIDS Foundation. “It was an especially unforgettable and emotional evening with our sons in attendance for the first time. They made their fathers extremely proud representing our family at the Foundation’s most important night of the year!”
“What an incredible way to mark our 30th annual Academy Awards Viewing Party! A truly memorable evening which was record breaking,” says Anne Aslett, CEO of Elton John AIDS Foundation. “Thanks to the amazing generosity and compassion of our attendees, we can continue supporting lifesaving programs across the globe to challenge HIV stigma, prevent infection and provide treatment to those who need it most.”
Presenting Sponsors of the party included Neuro Brands, Elton John Eyewear, a Walmart exclusive; Christian Lundberg & R. Martin Chavez in partnership with Equality Utah; Bob and Tamar Manoukian. Co-Sponsors included Cadillac, Gilead Sciences, Robert K. Kraft, The Leonard & Judy Lauder Fund, and M•A•C VIVA GLAM. The Foundation is especially grateful to the City of West Hollywood for their continued collaboration, and our official airline partner, American Airlines.