Following an eight-year exploration, documentary giant Ken Burns’s 16-hour “Country Music” premieres in the fall of 2019 on PBS. In honor of the profile on “Country Music,” Ryman Auditorium will present “Country Music: Live at the Ryman, a Concert Celebrating the Film by Ken Burns.” Burns will host the evening, presented by Bank of America, featuring performances by Dierks Bentley, Rosanne Cash, Rodney Crowell, Rhiannon Giddens, Vince Gill, Brenda Lee, Kathy Mattea, Ketch Secor of Old Crow Medicine Show, Ricky Skaggs, Marty Stuart, Asleep at the Wheel, Holly Williams and Dwight Yoakam on Wednesday, March 27, 2019. Tickets to “Country Music: Live at the Ryman, a Concert Celebrating the Film by Ken Burns” will go on sale February 8 at 10:00 am central via ticketmaster.com, Ryman.com or by phone at 800-745-3000.
“Country Music: Live at the Ryman” will be recorded for broadcast on PBS at a later date. In addition to live performances, the event will show select clips from the film, and be produced by Opry Entertainment, PBS and Florentine Films.
“In country music, we found a love for storytelling that translates everyday experiences into universal truths that we can all identify with,” said Ken Burns. “We’re very excited to share this film with the country, in towns large and small, from one coast to the other. But we are most excited to share it in those areas that gave birth to this most American of art forms. Bringing our film to Ryman Auditorium, the Mother Church of Country Music, and a character itself in our film, is a dream for us.”
“Ken Burns and his team shine a bright spotlight on the remarkable people, places, songs and stories that make country music so powerful and inspirational,” shares Sally Williams, Senior Vice President of Programming and Artist Relations for Opry Entertainment and General Manager of the Grand Ole Opry. “The Grand Ole Opry and Ryman Auditorium have been central to those stories for nearly a century, so it’s only fitting to celebrate the film at the Mother Church. On March 27, we’ll welcome Ken and some of the biggest stars in Country Music for a once-in-a-lifetime night of stories and songs.”
“PBS and our local stations are pulling out all the stops to make Ken Burns’ ‘Country Music’ the big event for the fall season,” said Perry Simon. “We are thrilled to kick off this effort with a bus tour through TN and to partner with Opry Entertainment and Florentine Films, Ken’s company, to produce this wonderful concert and make it available people throughout the country on PBS later this year.”
Known as the Mother Church of Country Music, Ryman Auditorium is holy ground for many of music’s greats. A bucket list venue for many, her stage has seen the likes of Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline to Little Big Town and Garth Brooks. The Ryman is known around the globe as one of the greatest performance halls in the world, equally for its world-class acoustics and history-making contributions to the live music industry. Named Pollstar Theatre of the Year nine times, the Ryman continues to receive accolades as top venue across various organizations, including the Academy of Country Music, the Country Music Association and the International Entertainment Buyers Association. In 2018, Rolling Stone magazine named the Ryman one of the “10 Best Live Music Venues in America”.
“Country Music” was directed by Ken Burns and produced by Burns, Dayton Duncan and Julie Dunfey. Duncan, Burns and Dunfey spent eight years researching and producing the film, conducting interviews with more than 100 people, including 40 members of the Country Music Hall of Fame (17 of those interviewed have since passed on). Among those storytellers are historian Bill Malone and a wide range of country artists such as Marty Stuart, Rosanne Cash, Vince Gill, Reba McEntire, Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Dwight Yoakam, Emmylou Harris, Kris Kristofferson, and Naomi and Wynonna Judd, as well as studio musicians, record producers and others. The film uses more than 3,200 photographs and over two hours of archival footage, including rare and never-before-seen photos and footage of Jimmie Rodgers, Johnny Cash and others.
Tickets are still available to the taping of “Country Music: Live at the Ryman” and can be purchased at ticketmaster.com.
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