CLIENT: Elvis Costello
DATE: May 24, 2011
LOCATION: New York City
PROJECT TYPE: Rock and Roll
JEREMY THOM DESIGNS ROLE:
In 1983, whilst a partner at Plumbline Designs in London, I designed for Elvis Costello a 12'ø spinning Ferris wheel, arrayed with 40 song titles, printed onto fabric which could be swapped out at every show. Audience members were invited up onto the stage to spin the wheel. When the wheel stopped spinning the '12 o'clock' indicator showed which song Elvis would perform next, whilst the audience member relaxed at a bar with a cocktail or danced in a Go-go cage. ... 27 years later my phone rang with a request to build the same wheel again for Elvis's 2011 US Tour. He said it was his favourite stage set ever! I did a bit of updating but fundamentally this version was identical to it's predecessor - except this time the cocktails at the bar weren't alcoholic!
The first two images are of the original wheel shown in 1983 just before being packed up at the workshop at the start of the European tour. This was packaged into a single roadcase that doubled as the base unit, and was sized specifically to fit into the production manager's van.
The other images are of the new version, shown both in workshop and at New York's Beacon Theater in 2011.