Students did not fill Bright Arena last night to watch the Crimson stickmen pump goals into an opposing net but to watch Elvis Costello "Pump It Up."
To secure a good seat in the general admission area, a few truly dedicated ticket-holders lined up early yesterday morning.
David I. Grasfield '88, first in line, said that he began camping by the hockey-arena-turned-concert stadium at 9:30 a.m., sacrificing a section to keep his place in line. He did leave for an hour, though, to make a doctor's appointment.
"We opened champagne as soon as we got here," said Liam B. Lavery '89, who arrived at 2 p.m. with three friends from Lowell.
Other Costello die-hards travelled from great distances to hear the "King of America."
"I'm visiting Elvis," said Richard Early, who flew from Pennsylvania's Allegheny College to visit friends here but also to see the show.
Not all at last night's concert were Costello fans, or even familiar with his songs. Some were curious, others were bored with the usual pace of a Harvard weekend. All were celebrating the end of classes.
"A lot of people came not because they like Costello but because it's a fun thing to do," said Jeffrey A. Camp '89, an Undergraduate Council member who helped with security at the concert.
"I had never heard him before we got him to come here. Then I went and got some tapes and listened to him," Camp said.
Brian C. Offutt '87, who was also working security, said when he saw Costello warming up in the Arena he had to ask someone to identify him. "I didn't even know what he looks like," Offut said.
But, beside the newcomers to Costello, the audience certainly had its share of long-time, hard-core fans.
"This is one of the best [Elvis concerts] I've ever seen. He was just incredible," said Lee Courtney, a Hartford, Connecticut disk-jockey who came to see his 15th Costello concert.
"I love Elvis," said Richard S. Eisert '88. "The intellectual appearance fostered by Elvis' horn-rimmed glasses clearly made the administration more amenable to having him here," he said.
Whether or not the glasses did it, the show met with the approval of Dean of Student Archie C. Epps III, who said "I think [the concert] is great."
The concert was Epps' second exposure to the Elvis sound. "The first time I heard it was in my office this afternoon," when someone played a tape of Costello tunes, Epps said.
Although Elvis is a "very innovative performer" and the performance was "more mellow than I had thought," Epps said, "He's not Beethoven."
After the concert, Grasfield, whose full day of waiting paid off in front row center seats, said that Elvis had been well worth the wait. "It was the best concert we've ever been to," Grasfield said. "I would have come at 9:30 [Thursday] night.
Self-proclaimed "incredible fan" Tory Berka '87, who was one of the chosen few from the audience to share the spotlight with Costello ass he spun the song-wheel to select the finale, said "I touched him and he touched me."
Costello added more than a few fans to his following after last night's concert. "I've never seen Costello before and I was amazed," said James W. McInnes '89.