This is the English translation of a Hungarian post by András Faragó.
What is the connection between Elvis Presley and the 1956 Hungarian Revolution? Why has there been an Elvis Presley Square near the Buda abutment of Margit Bridge in Budapest since 2011? Did you know that Elvis was posthumously awarded honorary citizenship of Budapest?
The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, the then-young 21-year-old Elvis Presley, was reportedly touched by the events of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and, after its suppression, made efforts to raise aid for those in need in Hungary. In early 1957, on the legendary Ed Sullivan Show stage, he sang a song titled “Peace in the Valley” in memory of the Hungarian Revolution, and the show’s host, Ed Sullivan, encouraged viewers to donate and send aid packages to the struggling Hungarians.
Elvis’s role in ’56 was not highlighted in Hungary for a long time, but in 2011, the public space near the Buda abutment of Margit Bridge was named after Elvis Presley. In the same year, he was posthumously awarded honorary citizenship of Budapest for his sincere empathy with the ideals of the Hungarian Revolution, his assistance to the victims, and his outstanding role in promoting the events of the revolution in the United States.
Recording of “Peace in the Valley” from the TV2 Napló program, 2004.