Elvis Presley played some of his last concerts in New Haven, Hartford

Over the weekend, thousands flocked to theaters to see Baz Lurhmann’s “Elvis,” a newly released film based on the life and legacy of rock and roll icon Elvis Presley. Just a few years before the king of rock and roll’s death, thousands also flocked to venues in Connecticut to see Presley perform live.

During his performances, Presley shook hands with some fans, kissed some, and gave a teenage girl a white bandana from his neck. About 100 of his fans rushed to the stage and showered the star with gifts, including several bouquets of roses, but he rejected a bottle of champagne, according to the 1975 article.

The King of Rock and Roll’s next performance in the State of Nutmeg was on July 28, 1976 at the Civic Center in Hartford. All 12,314 tickets sold out in six hours, with some people reselling $12.50 tickets for $100 according to the fan site elvisconcerts.com.

On July 30, 1976, Presley returned to the Colosseum, again sporting an Egyptian bird jumpsuit. During her last performance in Connecticut, a fan handed her a giant teddy bear, according to a video clip posted to Facebook.

His music from this tour was recorded and released as an album titled “Elvis – New Haven ’76” under Follow That Dream Records. The setlist included songs like “Amen”, “All Shook Up” and “Jailhouse Rock”, according to setlist.fm.

Some fans consider his 1976 performances to be among his weakest due to his deteriorating health. Elvis Today Blog Describes the singer’s voice as “weak and fragile” and noted that he sounded exhausted and out of breath. Presley planned to return to Hartford on August 21, 1977, but died five days prior at the age of 42.

Years after his death, Presley’s legacy continues to draw large crowds. The last “Elvis” movie was No. 1 at the box office during its opening weekend, according to The Associated Press. The biopic grossed $31.1 million, beating “Top Gun: Maverick” which grossed $30.5 million in its fifth weekend.

Austin Butler, who portrayed Presley in the film, said QG that he was able to connect to the late musician’s story beyond his music and time spent in the public eye.

“His mother died when he was 23, and my mother died when I was 23,” Butler told GQ. “So when I found out about this, it was one of those things where I got chills, and I just thought, okay, I can connect to this.”

Butler brings Presley back to life in the biopic, which is now showing in Connecticut theaters.


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