A star-studded lineup celebrated the return of country music to the Grand Ole Opry House on Tuesday night, five months after more than four feet of silt-filled floodwater covered the historic stage.
The Opry has played at different venues around Nashville, but never missed a show since the May 1 floods. It cost more than $20 million to clean up and restore the Opry House.
When the curtain went up Tuesday night, Little Jimmy Dickens and Brad Paisley sang “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” just as they did a month earlier when they helped replace the historic six-foot oak circle that was taken from the Ryman Auditorium when the Opry moved in 1974. It had been removed for safekeeping while the building was being restored.
In addition to Paisley and Dickens, the Tuesday night show included Charlie Daniels, Del McCoury, Martina McBride and Keith Urban, just to name a few who appeared on the live telecast that aired on Great American Country and was streamed live on opry.com.
On Oct. 2, the Opry will continue its celebration of Nashville’s spirit and resilience by inviting its hometown to get an up-close look at the newly renovated Opry House during a day of free tours.
There will be much to see, including a new artist entrance area, 18 uniquely themed dressing rooms, and the famed circle of wood at center stage. The Nashville celebration will spill into the Opry Plaza with free music throughout the day, including a performance by hit-making new group The Band Perry.