Oscar-nominated actress Salma Hayek will host this year's Nobel Peace Prize Concert in honor of laureate Mohamed ElBaradei and the International Atomic Energy Agency he leads, organizers said Tuesday.
The 39-year-old superstar from Mexico will be master of ceremonies for a lineup that includes artists Gladys Knight, Duran Duran and Sugababes at the Dec. 11 concert in Oslo, organizers said in an exclusive announcement to The Associated Press.
"It is fun to have such a big celebrity and wonderful actress as host," concert producer Odd Arvid Stroemstad said. "She is also very concerned about other things than just playing films."
The concert, held a day after the Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony in Oslo, has become one of the biggest events in the prize celebrations, and is usually broadcast on television in about 100 countries.
Last year, it was hosted by American superstars Tom Cruise and Oprah Winfrey in honor of the 2004 laureate, Kenyan environmentalist Wangari Maathai.
Entertainers booked for this year's concert also include Irish boy band Westlife, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, Colombian rock star Juanes and Welsh opera singer Katherine Jenkins.
Hayek was an Academy Awards nominee for best actress in 2003 for her role in the film Frida, which she also produced. She had made her way to Hollywood after starring in a popular Mexican soap opera.
Geir Lundestad, non-voting secretary of the five-member Norwegian committee that awards the peace prize, said he was delighted that Hayek agreed to be host.
"Hayek is universally admired all over the world, and we could not have a better Nobel ambassador to help us in the cause of peace," he said in a statement released in advance to The AP. "The concert is a wonderful and lively celebration, and I hope people all over the world will watch."
ElBaradei and the IAEA shared the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize for their drive to curb the spread of atomic weapons by using diplomacy to resolve standoffs with Iran and North Korea over their nuclear programs.
In addition to the concert, celebrations of the laureate include the presentation ceremony at the Oslo City Hall, a lavish banquet and a torch-light parade, reported AP. P.T.