When the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak began shutting down country shows and events last week, the Grand Ole Opry immediately suspended all performances in front of a live audience through April 4. However, the institution has vowed to continue its near century-long tradition of live radio broadcasts.
This Saturday, the Opry’s circle will continue to be unbroken, thanks to performers Brad Paisley, Vince Gill and Marty Stewart. The three country icons will take the stage together, each holding a guitar and standing six feet apart in order to maintain safe social distance.
The Opry availed itself of the power of modern technology in order to keep its show going, using a very small production crew and a limited number of artists delivering acoustic performances from the stage. Though there will be no one in the venue’s seats, you can tune in via the Opry’s Circle Network, or online at the Circle All Access’ Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, you can tune in to 650 AM WSM, the Opry’s flagship radio station, including listening online.
Last week marked the first time that the Opry implemented this new method of broadcasting its show. Bill Anderson, Jeannie Seely and Connie Smith were among those who took the stage. Almost half a million fans tuned in to watch or listen to their performance.
This weekend’s broadcast will mark the Opry’s 4,916th consecutive Saturday night show.
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