Irish Arts Center's 20th Annual Spirit of Ireland Gala, on Oct 18, will include performances by Costello, Nora Brown and Stephanie Coleman, and David Keenan.
Irish Arts Center (IAC) is set to host their 20th A Spirit of Ireland Gala, at Cipriani's in Manhattan, honoring music legend Elvis Costello, and marking the midpoint of construction of their new building. IAC is a multidisciplinary center dedicated to bringing people of all backgrounds together through the excellence and dynamism of Irish arts and culture.
As the new Irish Arts Center takes form and the organization realizes its full potential for the presentation of vital, dynamic, multidisciplinary work, IAC celebrates an artist whose output across the years reveals limitless breadth, depth, and ceaseless musical exploration.
IAC’s gala will take place on Oct 18, filling the banquet hall Cipriani 42nd Street (110 E 42nd Street, in the famed 1921-built Bowery Banks Savings Building) with the event’s trademark festive energy and gripping musical performances.
The 20th Spirit of Ireland Gala will begin with cocktails at 7pm, followed by dinner, program, and performances—including music from Costello. Other anticipated performances will include prodigy banjoist Nora Brown and fiddler Stephanie Coleman; and Dundalk-born breakout singer-songwriting sensation David Keenan with an eight-piece band.
The event— which is chaired by UBS Americas Chairman Bob McCann, one of Irish America’s most revered business leaders and philanthropists, and Teneo co-founder Paul Keary—also honors Richard J. Daly, Executive Chairman of Broadridge Financial Solutions.
Irish Arts Center Executive Director Aidan Connolly said, “Elvis Costello is iconic, innovative and independent, with an astounding catalog of songs fueled by a palpable artistic freedom and a lifetime of exhilarating artistic collaborations.
The path that he has forged is completely aligned with the environment we seek to provide artists at Irish Arts Center. We’re so thrilled to have the chance to welcome and pay tribute to him.”
Deemed one of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time by Rolling Stone, Grammy-winning musician Elvis Costello (born Declan Patrick MacManus) has, across a five-decade career, traversed numerous genres, his work tied together by the excellence, wryness, scorching intelligence, and emotional range of his songwriting.
As The Hollywood Reporter writes, the “relentlessly prolific, fearlessly genre-bending… rock icon has made a career of defying expectations of the staid music establishment, garnering a loyal audience even as he jumped from pub to punk, new wave to jazz, piano ballads to orchestral numbers and back to rock again.”
Most recently, in 2018, he released Look Now with his band The Imposters, which Pitchfork deemed a “triumph for Costello, a showcase for how he can enliven a mastery of form with a dramatist’s eye.”
Special guest and honorary chair Gabriel Byrne will also join for the Gala evening which includes co-chairs and co-hosts such as longtime American Ireland Fund Chair Loretta Brennan Glucksman, recently retired KPMG International COO Shawn Kelly and Mary Kelly, Irish Arts Center Chairman Gerry Boyle (of Commodore Construction), former American General CEO Bob Devlin and Kate Devlin, former president of Tiffany & Co. James E. Quinn and Diane Quinn, former Ireland Funds CEO Kieran McLoughlin and attorney Russell Gioiella and writer Nerissa Radell.
This summer, IAC raised the final beam on the superstructure that will become the New Irish Arts Center—their “Lincoln Center” for the global Irish community, in the middle of the cultural capital of the world. The long-awaited new building at 726 11th Avenue—with a state of the art flexible theatre, classrooms and studio spaces, cutting edge technology, and a vibrant café-lobby—is expected to open in the Autumn of 2020.
Amidst this construction, the Center has enjoyed visits from Irish government dignitaries including Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan, Tánaiste Simon Coveney, and, most recently President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins. The Center continues to raise funds for Phase Two of construction (the renovation of its existing historic 51st street building), and the opening seasons of bold and dynamic programming in the new space.
Gala tickets start at $1,250 – and only a few seats remain for this epic evening. Tickets can be purchased through Chad Newman at 212-757-3318 x228 or firstname.lastname@example.org.