Wednesday, April 22, 2015 | 2:27 p.m.
The Elvis Experience
Millions of TV viewers will be tuned in Thursday morning to NBC’s “Today” with Matt Lauer to watch the live broadcast of the first couple to be married here at the new Elvis Presley Graceland Wedding Chapel at Westgate Las Vegas.
Priscilla Presley and daughter Lisa Marie Presley will be there to watch the nuptials of Kaycee Satava and Cameron Baker, who have arrived here from their home in Portland, Ore.
It will be a very early start to the day for the couple, Priscilla and Lisa Marie because of the three-hour time difference back to New York studios. The wedding here is set for 5:30 a.m. for the 8:30 a.m. satellite feed.
Cameron and Kaycee won the wedding package from “Today”: “We’re crying with the excitement. I’m getting married to my best friend,” said Kaycee. “And in front of Elvis’s family. We are big fans of Priscilla and Lisa Marie, too.
“I was immobile and forced to lie in bed from medication when I was a child fighting a health condition. I became an Elvis fan listening to his music and watching his movies. ‘Love Me Tender” is my favorite Elvis song, and we’ll play it at our wedding.”
The ceremony in front of a reproduction of Graceland where Elvis and Priscilla lived kicks off a day of celebrations when the Elvis Exhibition and theater show “The Elvis Experience” premiere.
The expansive, permanent exhibition features hundreds of artifacts and Elvis memorabilia never before displayed outside the Elvis estate and some not even seen before in Graceland. Priscilla and Lisa Marie will formally cut the red ribbon to open the exhibit at 2 p.m. Thursday.
Then at 8 p.m. in the newly decorated and transformed Elvis Presley Theater is the first presentation of “The Elvis Experience,” a large-scale production replicating the legendary Las Vegas shows of “the King” with 24 musicians and eight choral members and starring actor Martin Fontaine from Canada.
Elvis performed more than 600 record-breaking sold out shows for seven years from 1969 through 1976 at the property. Thursday’s opening events take place on the 59th anniversary of his first performance here in 1956.
David Siegel, CEO of Westgate, said: “Elvis is synonymous with Las Vegas and this property, so we are tremendously excited to have this new attraction and live show here to entertain our visitors. It is a true honor to join forces with Graceland to bring Elvis to the Westgate. We are thrilled to have Elvis back in the building.”
Priscilla is thrilled that Elvis is back, too. She commented: “We’d been thinking about this for years. He loved Las Vegas, and it was just right as the International, the Hilton and now the Westgate came together. It was such an important part of his career.”
You can read Editor at Large John Katsilometes’ interview with Priscilla posted Tuesday. Joe Weinshanker, managing partner of Graceland, added, “After a 40-year absence, it’s time for the authentic Elvis Presley to return to Las Vegas.”
Robin Leach of “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” fame has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past 15 years giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Sun A&E Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.