Clinton, Jackson bring star power to Vienna

Janet Jackson, Bill Clinton and Brooke Shields will be the stars at this year's Life Ball, Vienna's colourful AIDS charity event, on May 21, organisers said on Monday.

Former US President Clinton, a regular guest, will return for the ball's 19th edition, which will commemorate 30 years since the discovery of the AIDS virus, HIV.

Other notable guests will include UNAIDS chief Michel Sidibe and actress Shields, with musical interludes by singers Jackson and Natasha Bedingfield, and violinist Nigel Kennedy.

The evening will begin with a gala dinner at the Imperial Palace sponsored by Austrian President Heinz Fischer, followed by an extravagant red carpet fashion show and party at Vienna's neo-gothic City Hall.

The Canadian designer duo Dsquared2 -- Dean und Dan Caten -- are behind this year's fashion show, memorably held on a red-ribbon catwalk in past years.

The Life Ball -- one of the biggest AIDS charity events in the world, attracting some 40,000 revellers every year -- raised over 1.5 million euros (ê1.9 million) for international and national HIV and AIDS projects last year.

In November, UNAIDS and AIDS LIFE, the organisation of Life Ball co-founder Gery Keszler, announced they had joined forces to raise funds and awareness about the disease.

Past guests of the Life Ball have included singer Katy Perry and actresses Sharon Stone and Whoopi Goldberg.

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