Chilean Miner Stars in Elvis Presley Show

Edison Peña, a Chilean miner who became popular worldwide as a major Elvis fan, visited Las Vegas Jan. 10-12 to experience Viva Elvis by Cirque du Soleil and Aria Resort & Casino at CityCenter.

Peña was offered a guest appearance in the show Tuesday, Jan. 11 and received VIP treatment during his stay at Aria.

In a similar gesture, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts has decided to welcome Chilean miners by offering them family vacations at Walt Disney World Resort.

During their complimentary six-night Disney vacation, Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2011, the miners, their rescuers and immediate families will meet Disney characters, visit all four Walt Disney World theme parks and serve as honorary Grand Marshals of the Main Street, U.S.A. parade in Magic Kingdom. (Read: Disney to Welcome Chilean Miners, Rescuers)

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Meanwhile, Spike TV and reality show producer, Thom Beers, are going to take viewers down into the depths of the Earth for a look at one of the world’s most dangerous and compelling jobs, coal mining.

Spike TV will premiere the 10 episode, one-hour series ‘Coal’ in April 2011. It will be executive produced by Beers’ Original Productions, a FremantleMedia Company. (Read: Spike TV Series on the Lives of Coal Miners)

Moreover, President Barack Obama welcomed NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and a NASA team that assisted trapped Chilean miners to the Oval Office for a ceremony that recognized Americans involved in the rescue. (Read: President Obama Honors NASA for Miners’ Rescue)

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During the performance, Peña traveled across the Viva Elvis stage in style, riding in the show’s representation of Elvis’s iconic pink Cadillac during “Blue Suede Shoes.”

After his special appearance in front of the excited audience he described the experience to the Viva Elvis cast as “fantastic – the scenery, the special effects, the music, all of you. You are the best and beautiful. I have no words.”

Peña, along with 33 miners, was trapped underground in a Chilean mine for more than two months before help could bring them to the surface.

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During this time, Peña would have the miners sing Elvis songs to pass time and keep their spirits alive as they waited to be rescued.

After discovering the extent of Peña’s love for Elvis, Graceland offered the rescued miner a trip to Memphis where he received a private tour of the mansion and all of the exhibits.

He was also able to experience other Memphis attractions such as the historic Sun Studio where Elvis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis all started their music careers.

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Peña finished his whirlwind tour of everything Elvis with his exclusive cameo in Viva Elvis, which stands as a tribute to the life and music of Elvis Presley.

Viva Elvis, a harmonious fusion of dance, acrobatics and live music, is a tribute to the life and music of Elvis Presley.

Powerful, sexy, whimsical, truly unique and larger than life – the show highlights an American icon who transformed popular music and whose image embodies the freedom, excitement and turbulence of his era. Viva Elvis is performed nightly at 7 and 9:30pm Tuesday through Saturday.

RMN News

Rakesh Raman