Angie Marchese, Vice President of Archives and Exhibits at Elvis Presley Enterprises, United States. Photography © Elvis Presley’s Graceland
1.What is your museum about and what is your work there?
Graceland is so much more than a mansion. It was the private retreat of the King of Rock ‘n Roll. It was where his family grew up, spent their time together and enjoyed life. Today, you’re invited to explore Elvis Presley’s home, Graceland mansion, and immerse yourself in his life and legacy at Elvis Presley’s Memphis Entertainment Complex.
I’m Graceland’s Vice President of Archives and Exhibits and my role is to oversee the Graceland Archives, develop new exhibit concepts and maintain our current exhibitons.
2.How is your museum dealing with the coronavirus crisis?
Graceland has worked diligently to reconfigure all of our operations, including tours, retail and restaurants, to ensure the health and safety of our guests and associates. Our covid-19 plan and protocols meet or exceed the social distancing, capacity, and health and safety guidelines outlined by local, state and federal authorities.
3.What is the impact on your digital activity? Do you have tips to share with your colleagues?
During covid, Graceland engaged our fanbase by interacting more online through our Facebook and Instagram pages. We started a new “Inside the Archives” video series that the fans loved! One tip we can share would be to know your consumer and how they interact with your museum.
We know what our fans want – which is always more Elvis – and we know that a majority of them are on Facebook. We wanted them to know that we were still around to take care of business and posted several videos and continue to engage by going “live” to show them around the property and remind them we are back open.
4.Are you preparing yourself for the reopening or you are already opened? Tell us in what way.
Graceland reopened in May. We use storytelling every day here at Elvis Presley’s Graceland. From the exhibits, to our website, to our socials and beyond, our goal is to tell the story of Elvis Presley day in and day out.
Interview by Fabio Pariante, journalist
Elvis Aaron Presley (Tupelo, 1935 – Memphis, 1977) was an American singer, actor and dancer, a true immortal cultural icon, a source of inspiration for rock and roll all over the world. In over twenty years of activity, he has played many musical genres, such as rhythm and blues, gospel, country, western, spiritual, melodic and pop and has released 61 albums (he has sold over a billion records worldwide, a record for a solo singer). During his career, Elvis has never performed outside the United States, except for a few concerts in Canada.
Raised in a very humble family, he had his first guitar at the age of 8 and took his first steps in music by attending a church in Tupelo. Then in 1948 he moved with his family to Memphis, where he recorded the demo “My happiness” dedicated to his mother at the record company Sun Records, whose owner offered Elvis to sing in a group, the Blue Moon Boys and stood out on stage for his eccentric look, facial expressions and body movements.
Thanks to the great success, Elvis bought the house in Graceland where he moved with his family and staff. Today it is a museum, a pilgrimage destination for fans from all over the world: it is a house of 23 rooms furnished with an eccentric and original style, and all the rooms can be visited except the bedroom and the bathroom, where the artist was found died, August 16, 1977.
Today, Angie Marchese is the Vice President of Archives and Exhibits at Elvis Presley Enterprises and Graceland is the second most famous and visited home in the United States, after the White House.