In celebration of Thursday's Windows XP launch, Microsoft announced this weekend that the company will host a free hour-long concert in New York City featuring recording artist Sting. The concert will be held at Bryant Park at 1:00 P.M., directly following the XP launch at the Marriott Marquis Theater. At Sting's request and in appreciation for his participation in the day's festivities, Microsoft will donate software to two schools affected by the September 11 terrorist attacks.

"We're honored to be doing the Windows XP launch in New York and couldn't be happier that Sting has accepted our invitation to perform," said Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates. "This concert gives us a chance to recognize the courage and resiliency of New York as we launch a new age in personal computing with Windows XP."

"I am especially pleased to do this in the city most affected by the horrific events on September 11 and in solidarity with all New Yorkers," Sting said. "I am grateful to Microsoft for giving me the opportunity."

Sting has already figured heavily in Microsoft's promotion of Windows Media 8 and Media Player for Windows XP (MPXP) this year; the company frequently used his "Desert Rose" single and "Brand New Day" album to show off the sonic capabilities of its latest media software. If you want to attend the concert, you can pick up tickets from several retail locations in the New York area (click the lilnk below for a complete listing). If you're not in New York, you can view the concert through a MSN Webcast (in the United States only).

Getting Tickets in New York
   Sting concert tickets are available at two CompUSA stores, one at 57th Street and Broadway, and one at 5th Avenue and 38th Street; FYE, across from the Radio City Music Hall; three Gateway Country Stores at Park Avenue and 17th, Columbus Circle, and East 86th; J&R Computer and Music World at 15 Park Row; and Virgin Megastore in Times Square. Best Buy stores in Secaucus and Rego Park in Queens will also distribute tickets.