Opry Entertainment today 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. Read more about Opry NextStage at Billboard.com HERE.

Click HERE to see what fans can expect from Opry NextStage.

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 exciting, talented and diverse 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 December 7. Tegan Marie is scheduled for December 8. Riley Green will make his Opry debut on December 11, and Travis Denning, who just made his Grand Ole Opry debut last week, will return to Opry at the Ryman on December 15. More Opry appearances will be scheduled in 2019. Tenille Townes’ My Opry Debut video is available now HERE on the Opry’s YouTube channel. Additional Opry NextStage artist videos will be produced and released throughout 2019.

Opry NextStage will officially launch with a kickoff party and concert featuring performances by the inaugural class at Ole Red Nashville on January 8, 2019.

Tickets for the Opry NextStage kickoff party and concert at Ole Red Nashville on January 8 will go on sale Thursday, November 29 at 10 am CT. To purchase tickets, go to https://www.opry.com/nextstage.

Sally Williams, SVP & GM, Grand Ole Opry, stated, “The Opry was thrilled to salute Ray Charles and his passion for the music and storytelling of country music. The performers tonight demonstrated what Ray understood so well – that music has no bounds.”

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 in country music. Opry NextStagepresents 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.

“One of the many special things about Grand Ole Opry shows is that audiences not only get to experience their favorite country music legends and current superstars, but also discover the brightest future stars. Opry NextStage will shine the spotlight on four talented artists at the beginning of their careers who we think will be connecting with audiences for years to come,” said Sally Williams, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Grand Ole Opry. “In addition to the exposure of the Opry brand, we’re also excited to be giving these artists the immeasurable experience of walking off the Opry or Ryman stage to be greeted and surrounded by their heroes and fellow artists with centuries of combined experience – connections they can’t get anywhere else.”

For more information about Opry NextStage and its first class, visit 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.

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