Elvis at 21: Starburst

Photo: © Alfred Wertheimer. All rights reserved.
October 13, 2010
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Photo: © Alfred Wertheimer. All rights reserved.


Although flashbulbs were going off constantly during the performance, I knew they wouldn’t affect my still shots. Except for one. …When I developed the film, I discovered a shot of Elvis with a magnificent spray of light in front of him. Not strong enough to reach the stage, the flash in the audience highlighted the back of about thirty rows of heads as well. That random flash was in perfect sync with my shutter opening…. When I saw that photograph, it represented for me this entire experience and was better than anything I had done previously or would do later. Instead of ruining the frame, this unexpected lucky moment game me “Starburst.”

— Al Wertheimer