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New York City is finally getting back up on its feet after a year of social distancing and isolation due to the pandemic. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that a “Homecoming Week” celebration is in the process of being planned in August to revitalize the city. The festivities will feature a concert to be held on Central Park’s Great Lawn, with rumors that 89-year-old legendary record producer Clive Davis will have an appearance. Now the concert has been given the first slate of headlining acts: Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, and Jennifer Hudson. While more specific details are yet to come, a tentative date of August 21st has been set, and prospective attendees are to number around 60,000 with ticket releases to be announced soon.
Central Park’s Great Lawn has been home to many historic concerts for these artists personally, from Paul Simon’s own 1981 concert which saw 400,000 people attend his reuniting with Art Garfunkel, to Diana Ross’ remarkable 1983 appearance, which saw 450,000 attendees and was famously cut short by a lightning storm. These headlining artists are likely hoping for something less dramatic but equally as memorable, as it is reported that eight “iconic” artists are set to perform. New Jersey native Bruce Springsteen will be there as well, as his incredible successful Springsteen on Broadway has recently returned to the St James Theatre. It also comes at an interesting time for co-headliner Jennifer Hudson, who will be starring as the iconic singer in a biopic Respect to be released later this year. The soul-legends hits will echo across the Great Lawn when Hudson takes the stage in August.
In recent years, the majority of Central Park’s concerts have been held at Summer Stage, with exceptions made for the annual Global Citizen Festival that has been on hiatus since 2019 but is set to make its return on September 25th following the Homecoming Concert. In light of this, expectations are high for the remaining acts to be announced. While insiders claim that Patti Smith is expected to make an appearance for a duet with Springsteen, no other acts have been announced. Ticketing is expected to be mostly free, with paid VIP seating available, and 70% of tickets will go to go to those who have already received their COVID vaccination. For those unable to get tickets, and those around both the country and the world, the reportedly three-hour concert will be set to air on CNN.