Following is a press release issued today from Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.:
GRACELAND LAUNCHES A YEAR-LONG GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION OF ELVIS MILESTONES OF 1956
Beginning with the annual Elvis birthday festivities in January, throughout 2006 Elvis Presley Enterprises will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the year Elvis Presley became a superstar and the lightning rod for the controversy of early rock ‘n’ roll.
The year 1956 included the release of Elvis’ first RCA single, first television appearances, first movie release and other career benchmarks.
MEMPHIS, TN – December 27, 2005 – In 1956 Elvis Presley’s career exploded and the music and popular culture of the world changed forever. EPE and Graceland will officially kick off the year-long celebration with three days of activities during the Elvis Birthday celebration January 6-8.
Among the key 2006 50th anniversaries:
- The 50th Anniversary of Elvis’ January 10th recording of his first RCA single Heartbreak Hotel, which became his first national number one pop hit and his first gold record award winner. The single spent 8 weeks on the Billboard Top 100 chart at #1 and crossed genres, topping the country chart for 17 weeks and reaching #3 on the R&B chart, and will be celebrated with a re-release.
- The 50th Anniversaries of Elvis’ six appearances on the Dorsey Brothers’ Stage Show, his two appearances on The Milton Berle Show, his appearance on The Steve Allen Show and the first two of his three historic appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show. The response from these performances represented the first real exploitation of the power of the infant medium of television and greatly accelerated the fire of controversy surrounding Elvis’s early career and the burgeoning form of music known as rock ‘n’ roll.
- The 50th Anniversary of the two-sided #1 hit single Don’t Be Cruel/ Hound Dog and many other big hit records.
- The 50th Anniversary of Elvis’ first movie, Love Me Tender.
- The 50th Anniversary of Elvis’ first album, Elvis Presley.
- The 50th Anniversary of the September concert performance in Tupelo, Mississippi, when Elvis triumphantly returned to his birthplace town as a major star.
- The 50th anniversary of Elvis Presley's first RCA recording. A deluxe Elvis #1 Singles box will be released on January 24, 2006.
Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc. will be celebrating this landmark year with many licensing and merchandising programs, special events and entertainment projects, which are in the works and will be announced over the course of 2006.
The year-long celebration will lead up to 2007, which will commemorate the 30th anniversary of Elvis’ death on August 16, 1977.