Interview with Barbara Gray who reveals a 55 year old secret
June 30, 1956 black-and-white photo features 'The King' smooching with a mysterious and unidentified woman. The photo became iconic; but even the photographer, Alfred Wertheimer, didn't know who the girl was. Her name, if not her image, remained unknown for years. Who she was remained a mystery. Until now ... You wont be familiar with the name Barbara Gray, but that is about to change, and here we have the first interview with Barbara.
The video starts with Barbara's original phone call to WTMA Charleston radio station to reveal her identity.
The photo became iconic; but even the photographer, Alfred Wertheimer, didn't know who the girl was. Her name, if not her image, remained unknown for years. Until now. Barbara Gray a 75-year-old real estate manager from Charleston has stepped forward to claim the identity of Elvis' anonymous 'date for the day'.
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Barbara Gray, who has endured seeing herself in the photo repeatedly--as well as in other shots from the famous series Wertheimer captured on a summer day in 1956--told Vanity Fair she has decided to reveal herself simply to get her story out fy contacting Alfred Wertheimer. Wertheimer, who had fielded many such messages from women over the years, said he ultimately identified Gray by her petite stature.
According to Gray, the day she was photographed with the King was the first day she met him. She'd called the singer at his hotel on a dare when he visited Charleston. The two made plans to meet up a couple days later in Richmond, Virginia. Wertheimer, at the time, happened to be following Presley on the road, chronicling with his camera the young singer's rise to fame. The rest? History.
Although Gray said she thought the budding young singer was 'beautiful', she felt no sparks for him. 'Maybe he had sparks', she noted in an interview with Today on Monday. 'But I didn't know who he was'.
At any rate, the photo session was apparently as fun as it appeared. 'He was very silly', Gray remembered. 'We were running around chasing each other and just being young'.
Wertheimer told Today he never thought to get Gray's name. 'I never realized these [photos] would become iconic', he explained. Inquiring minds probably are wondering: Did anything romantic come out of what appeared to be a magnetic photo session? Presley did ask Gray if she'd like to go out that night, but Gray responded that she was leaving to go to Philadelphia to see her boyfriend. She never saw the singer again.
Tupelo's Own Elvis Presley DVD + 16 page booklet.
Never before have we seen an Elvis Presley concert from the 1950's with sound. Until Now! The DVD Contains recently discovered unreleased film of Elvis performing 6 songs, including Heartbreak Hotel and Don't Be Cruel, live in Tupelo Mississippi 1956. Included we see a live performance of the elusive Long Tall Sally seen here for the first time ever.
This is an excellent release no fan should be without it.
The 'parade' footage is good to see as it puts you in the right context with color and b&w footage. The interviews of Elvis' Parents are well worth hearing too. The afternoon show footage is wonderful and electrifying : Here is Elvis in his prime rocking and rolling in front of 11.000 people. Highly recommended.