43° Good Afternoon
43° Good Afternoon

Bruce Springsteen to open 12-12-12 concert

Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band perform

Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band perform at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. (Sept. 2, 2012) Photo Credit: Getty Images

Producer John Sykes says there are plenty of surprises left to unveil at tonight's "12-12-12: A Concert for Sandy Relief" benefit at Madison Square Garden.

"There really isn't going to be any down time in this show," Sykes said Tuesday at The Garden, while workmen began assembling the massive stage behind him.

Sykes did reveal that Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band are set to kick off the benefit at 7:30 p.m., ensuring that the show, which will be broadcast live to nearly 2 billion people around the world, will start with a bang.

"I can tell you that the show will start with one of the world's greatest artists and it will end with one of the world's greatest artists," he said, laughing. "And in between, there will be a lot of great artists, too."

The superstar lineup already includes Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, The Rolling Stones, The Who, Kanye West, Eric Clapton and more A-listers performing, while Leonardo DiCaprio, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jon Stewart, Kristen Stewart and other celebrities will tell the stories of those who were affected by superstorm Sandy.

Producers say the celebrities will talk about how the superstorm affected the places they live or came from. Billy Crystal, for example, is expected to talk about how Sandy affected Long Beach.

They will also ask for donations throughout the show for the Robin Hood Foundation Relief Fund, which has already raised $30 million, and ask people to purchase a live album from the concert that will be available on iTunes next week.

Organizers expect "12-12-12" donations to surpass the $65 million raised by "The Concert for New York City" following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Public television stations WNET, WLIW and NJTV said they received special approval Tuesday from the FCC to seek donations for the Robin Hood Relief Fund as they air the concert Wednesday night.

More Entertainment