Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the outdoor event, which is being booked by none other than Clive Davis, today during video press conference. Jennifer Hudson will serve as another of the show’s headlining act, with several more performers still to be announced.
“This is going to be one of the greatest Central Park concerts in history,” the mayor said during his remarks. “This is something for the ages.”
The event will take place this summer at Central Park’s Great Lawn to celebrate the city’s re-opening following the COVID-19 pandemic. An official date for the concert has yet to be announced.
Mayor De Blasio previously said he envisioned a three-hour concert for 60,000 featuring upwards of eight “iconic” musicians performing. A majority of the tickets will be free, with at least 70 percent of the allotment dedicated to those individuals who are already vaccinated.
Springsteen’s headlining slot follows the re-opening of Springsteen on Broadway, his one-man show on the Great White Way which will now run through September 4th. “He is beloved in New York City in an extraordinary way,” de Blasio added of the rock icon, “even though he happens to come from Jersey — no one’s perfect.”
During his grand return to the Broadway stage, Springsteen joked about his November 2020 arrest for driving while intoxicated, calling it, “an act so heinous that it offended the entire fuckin’ United States!” Earlier this summer, he also re-recorded “A Dustland Fairytale” as, simply, “Dustland” with The Killers, and teased his plans for a possible 2022 tour with the E Street Band.
Simon, meanwhile, last performed in June 2020 during his livestream benefit with Willie Nelson, “A Night in Austin.” For her part, Hudson will next portray Aretha Franklin in the long-awaited biopic RESPECT after being personally hand-picked for the role by the late icon before her 2018 passing.