Elvis Aloha

by Candace RichComment — Updated August 3, 2023

Elvis Presley – Aloha from Hawaii

Broadcast at 12:30 AM Hawaii time, January 14, 1973 this special was beamed via the Intelsat IV satellite to countries all over the world. It consisted of a concert performance by Elvis before a live audience at the Honolulu International Center Arena. Then after the audience left, five more songs were recorded.

First it was broadcast to countires in the Far East, and then the next day to 28 European countries. On April 4, NBC broadcast the special in the US, including four of the songs taped without the audience.

Some staggering numbers. The US broadcast was watched by 51 percent of the viewing audience, more people than watched man’s first walk on the moon. Ultimately, nearly 1.5 billion people in 40 countries will see the show.

The concert was a fundraiser for the Kuiokalani Lee Cancer Fund in Hawaii and Elvis sang I’ll Remember You to honor the late Hawaiian composer, a cancer victim. Accordingly, there wll be no admission price, rather people will be asked to contribute what they can.

A full dress rehearsal was taped, but not televised, on the 12th. Elvis got a haircut before the performance of the 14th. So if you are curious as to the date an Aloha photo was taken – check for hair length!

Elvis was once again costumed by Bill Belew, this time in a stunning American theme symbolized by his eagle cape. After singing An American Trilogy, he would throw his studded belt out. Surprising everyone, Elvis would toss this magnificent gem-laden cape into the audience at the end of the show. Great night to be up front!

The show begins with scenes of Elvis arriving by helicopter to the background sounds of the theme song from his 1965 movie Paradise, Hawaiian Style. The performance begins with the thundering sounds of Richard Strauss’ Thus Spake Zarathustra(theme from 2001) and closed with I Can’t Help Falling In Love.

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