Some sort of Nashville watch party for the Ken Burns Country Music docu-series' debut on Sun., Sept. 15, which just happens to be the final night of AmericanaFest, seemed like a given. On Monday (Aug. 19), an event grander than some may have expected was announced: Hosted at the Grand Ole Opry House and featuring a 30 minute live performance by Old Crow Medicine Show.
Episode one of the eight part, 16-hour series relies on Old Crow Medicine Show fiddler Ketch Secor's historic knowledge to explain country music's roots, making his band ideal special guests of an ideal venue.
"As the stewards of the Grand Ole Opry and Ryman Auditorium where so many of the unforgettable moments featured in this film took place, we are thrilled to host this event and support access to quality programming," said Scott Bailey, president of Opry Entertainment Group, in a press release. "Like many of our partners in the Nashville community, we have eagerly anticipated the premiere of this film, and we hope it inspires everyone who watches to visit Nashville and experience this one-of-a-kind city for themselves."
Tickets go on sale to the public tomorrow (Aug. 23) for $75. Admission includes entry into the Opry's brand-new Circle Room theater experience, the live concert, a one-year subscription to PBS Passport, two drink tickets, pre-show snacks and a general admission seat to watch the first episode. The first 300 entrants also receive a copy of Old Crow Medicine Show's forthcoming Live at the Ryman album. Proceeds benefit Nashville's local public television station, NPT.
"We are thrilled to be working with Opry Entertainment Group to bring this exciting opportunity to our viewers and other country music fans," said Kevin Crane, NPT's president and CEO, in a statement.
The series airs Sept. 15-18 and Sept. 22-25 at 7 p.m. CDT. PBS Passport members can access the entire series for six months beginning Sept. 15, meaning Opry party attendees can binge the remaining episodes at their own pace.