On a fall evening, Elvis Costello gave a private concert for five-hundred lucky fans in celebration of the release of his album, National Ransom, that day. Within the ornate and awe-inspiring Celeste Bartos Forum in The New York Public Library’s world-famous Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, Costello – along with The Sugarcanes and Pete Thomas on drums – performed new songs from National Ransom as well as hits spanning his three-decades-and-counting career.
Since Elvis Costello’s debut album, “My Aim Is True,” was released in 1977, his musical eclecticism and fiercely literate lyrics have earned him recognition as one of the most innovative and influential songwriters since Bob Dylan. While his songs have been recorded by music legends such as Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, and Chet Baker, he is best known for his own performances with The Attractions (with whom he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003) and The Imposters.
The New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building opened in 1911. Since then The NYPL has grown to be the largest public library system in the world, and the Schwarzman Building, along with its world renowned Edward Clark Potter Lions – Patience and Fortitude – has become one of NYC’s most beloved landmark spaces. Originally the Central Circulation Room of The New York Public Library, the 6,400-square-foot Celeste Bartos Forum – with its spectacular 30-foot-high cast-iron and glass domed ceiling – was renovated in 1986 and is now host to special events.