NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Opry Entertainment has announced the launch of Opry NextStage, a year-long collaboration with four rising country artists: Riley Green, Tegan Marie, Tenille Townes, and Travis Denning. The collaboration will include live performances, strategic marketing support and short-form documentary style storytelling created by Opry Entertainment’s award-winning content team.
Inspired by audiences’ emotional responses when new artists debut on the Opry as well as the impact of the My Opry Debut video series, the primary goal of Opry NextStage is to create a meaningful connection between this group of talented young artists and the Opry’s passionate audience. Throughout the year, Opry Entertainment will work closely with artist teams to amplify their initiatives using assets from across the company’s brands, venues and channels.
Each Opry NextStage artist will perform on the Grand Ole Opry at Ryman Auditorium in December. Tenille Townes will perform both shows at Opry at the Ryman on Dec. 7. Tegan Marie is scheduled for Dec. 8. Riley Green will make his Opry debut on Dec. 11, and Travis Denning will return to Opry at the Ryman on Dec. 15. More Opry appearances will be scheduled in 2019.
Opry NextStage will officially launch with a kickoff party and concert featuring performances by the inaugural class Jan. 8, 2019 at Ole Red Nashville. Tickets will go on sale 10 a.m. CST Thursday, Nov. 29.
For over 90 years, the Grand Ole Opry has created opportunities for artists throughout the country music spectrum to make strong connections with fans and fellow artists – on its stages and across its channels – from radio to network television to digital. Audiences throughout the world look to the Opry to showcase the best in country music. Opry NextStage presents four artists making incredible music at the forefront of their careers. Through the Opry’s marketing platforms, Opry Entertainment will partner with Opry NextStage artists to tell their stories and expand their audiences.
Opportunities for each Opry NextStage artist include but are not limited to:
• Performances on the Grand Ole Opry at the Grand Ole Opry House and Ryman Auditorium
• Performances at Ole Red locations in Nashville and Gatlinburg, Tennessee
• Short form documentary video series produced by Opry Entertainment’s award-winning content team
• Customized digital activations utilizing Opry web and social assets including Opry.com, OleRed.com, WSMOnline.com and Opry Entertainment’s millions of combined social followers
• Other opportunities include outdoor advertising, special event performances, 650 WSM-AM/wsmonline.com podcasts and radio special.
For more information, visit www.opry.com/nextstage.
Since its inception, the Opry has helped launch the careers of countless artists including Roy Acuff, Patsy Cline, Little Jimmy Dickens, George Jones, Loretta Lynn, Bill Monroe, and Dolly Parton, to name just a few. Award-winning group Little Big Town made its very first public appearance as a group on the Opry stage in 1999. Josh Turner turned heads on his way to chart success with his Opry debut performance of “Long Black Train” at Ryman Auditorium in 2001. And Carrie Underwood cemented a place in country music with her first Opry appearance less than two weeks after having been named American Idol in 2005. Chris Janson performed his career launching hit “Buy Me A Boat” on the Opry stage the day it was first heard on radio and available digitally for listeners. All four artists have since become Opry members.
More on the Opry NextStage Class of 2019:
About Riley Green: Born in Jacksonville, Alabama, Riley Green was raised on the sounds of old traditional Country, Bluegrass, and Southern Gospel music. He learned the spirit of songwriting and performing at a young age while spending time with his grandfather, Bufford Green, who ran Golden Saw Music Hall. Green shared the stage with him and other men of his generation, laying a foundation for the songs he’d craft in the years to come, reflecting on the experiences of a young Southern man trying to find his place in the world. With a mixture of outlaw-rebellion and respect for tradition, Green’s original music has already tallied over 61 million streams to date. Currently on his headlining OUTLAWS LIKE US TOUR, Riley has built fierce support traveling the southeast for the last five years growing his loyal fanbase on social media. Named one of Rolling Stone Country’s “Artists You Need to Know,” his IN A TRUCK RIGHT NOW EP on BMLG Records was produced by Dann Huff and features four songs he co-wrote: “There Was This Girl,” “Same Old Song,” “Break Up More Often,” and “In A Truck Right Now.”
About Tegan Marie: With a larger-than-life voice, the 15-year-old Tegan Marie was discovered by girls’ media platform Sweety High and went on to become the youngest female to sign to a major country label (Warner Music Nashville) in 45 years. Following the release of fun-filled tracks “Keep It Lit” and “I Know How To Make A Boy Cry,” she is currently in the studio working with hit-makers Scott Hendricks (Blake Shelton) and Nathan Chapman (Taylor Swift) on new music. Since first breaking onto the scene, she’s catapulted into the national spotlight with performances on NBC’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, ABC’s Good Morning America, NBC’s TODAY and PBS’ Smokey Robinson: The Gershwin Prize, in addition to appearances on the Radio Disney Music Awards (2017-18). As her videos continue to gain a wide audience (over 200 million views), Tegan Marie has performed at the Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, Stagecoach, and CMA Music Fest and shared the stage with artists such as Cam, Hunter Hayes and Kelsea Ballerini while partnering with Pepsi MidAmerica for a tour across the Midwest. Critics took notice of the young star’s talent with Billboard, HuffPost and Rolling Stone naming her in their 2018 watch lists and with USA Today hailing, “[Tegan] Marie has the personality and the voice of a future star, and she definitely has the always hard-to-define ‘It.’” A regular on Radio Disney Country, Tegan Marie’s taking her undeniable charm to a different kind of stage this holiday season, joining Seinfeld’s John O’Hurley (Captain Hook) and Disney Channel’s Garrett Clayton (Peter Pan), when she plays Wendy in “Peter Pan And Tinker Bell – A Pirate’s Christmas” Dec. 13-23 at Nashville’s Tennessee Performing Arts Center.
About Tenille Townes: Canadian-born, Nashville-based Tenille Townes is poised for a breakthrough in 2019. Already receiving widespread acclaim for her Living Room Worktapes EP, Rolling Stone declares, “…a stripped-down introduction to an artist with a whole lot to say,” while Billboard furthers, “Her Living Room Worktapes EP is a piece of art! Her unique voice and storytelling sets her apart…you’ll have it on repeat.” Additionally, Townes is the subject of an in-depth profile at NPR Music’s The Record. Calling her “Nashville’s Newest Voice,” writer Jewly Hight gives a rare glimpse into the early stages of Townes’ burgeoning career and asserts, “…she’s an heir to Twain and Swift, Griffin and McKenna alike, as well as a potential peer to figures like Morris and Musgraves, who’ve built significant followings and visibility with strong, self-written material…” Her first official single, “Somebody’s Daughter,” is currently impacting at country radio, she is confirmed to join Dierks Bentley on his extensive “Burning Man Tour” next year and her forthcoming full-length debut album, produced by Jay Joyce, is set for release in 2019 on Columbia Nashville.
About Travis Denning: A native of Warner Robins, Georgia, Mercury Nashville’s Travis Denning vividly remembers the moment he realized he wanted to pursue music for a living. He was seven years old sitting in his dad’s truck and heard AC/DC for the first time. From then on, he was hooked and devoured all types of music from country, pop, rock and heavy metal. Denning started playing local bars at the age of 16 and built a solid following from his distinctive songs and raucous guitar licks. He moved to Nashville in 2014 and within a year signed a publishing deal with RED Creative Group. After penning songs for Jason Aldean, Justin Moore, Michael Ray and Chase Rice, he caught the attention of Universal Music Group and signed a record deal in 2017. Denning just released his debut single “David Ashley Parker From Powder Springs,” an upbeat coming-of-age song that paints a picture of a young man reminiscing on his carefree college memories. The singer/songwriter has previously opened shows for Cole Swindell, Alan Jackson, Chase Rice as well as Justin Moore and is currently on the road with LANCO as part of the “Hallelujah Nights” tour. He is currently in the studio working on his debut album.
About The Grand Ole Opry
The Grand Ole Opry® is presented by Humana®. Opry performances are held every Friday and Saturday of the year, with Tuesday night shows through December and seasonal Opry Country Classics shows on Thursdays. To plan an Opry visit, call (800) SEE-OPRY or visit opry.com. The Opry presents the best in country music live every week from Nashville, Tenn. Celebrating nine decades of entertainment, the Opry can be heard at opry.comand wsmonline.com, Opry and WSM mobile apps, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, and its flagship home, 650 AM-WSM. The Grand Ole Opry is owned by Ryman Hospitality Properties (NYSE: RHP). For more information, visit www.opry.com.
About Opry Entertainment
Opry Entertainment®, a division of Ryman Hospitality Properties (NYSE: RHP), is a producer of multi-media entertainment experiences with primary interests in location-based entertainment and television and stage production. Based in Nashville, Tennessee, its core business segments include the world-famous Grand Ole Opry®, the historic Ryman Auditorium®, Ole Red and legendary radio station 650 AM-WSM.
About Opry NextStage
For over nine decades, the Grand Ole Opry has created opportunities for artists throughout the country music spectrum to make strong connections with fans and fellow artists – on its stages and across its channels – from terrestrial radio to network television to the digital universe. Audiences throughout the world look to the Opry to showcase the very best of country music’s new stars, superstars and legends. Opry NextStage presents four diverse artists making incredible music at the forefront of their careers. Through the Opry’s marketing platforms, Opry Entertainment will partner with Opry NextStage artists to tell their stories and expand their audiences. Opry Entertainment is owned by Ryman Hospitality Properties, Inc. (NYSE: RHP), a Nashville-based REIT that owns and operates the Grand Ole Opry, Ole Red, Ryman Auditorium and 650 AM WSM.
About Ole Red
Ole Red is a lifestyle and entertainment brand inspired by Blake Shelton’s clever, irreverent third-chart hit, “Ol’ Red.” You can find Ole Red entertainment venues and products in two locations in the United States, the flagship multi-story bar, restaurant and entertainment venue in the heart of downtown Nashville’s famed Lower Broadway, and the very first location in Blake’s hometown of Tishomingo, Oklahoma. Ole Red Orlando is slated to open in 2020. Ole Red is owned and operated by Ryman Hospitality Properties, Inc. as part of its Opry Entertainment division. For additional information about Ole Red, visit us online at olered.com.
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