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Grand Old Stage At Ryman Auditorium To Be Removed, New One Installed

January 31, 2012

This is one of those stories that makes sense on the one hand, but is filled with sentimental attachment and difficulty on the other hand.

The famed stage of the legendary Ryman Auditorium where the longest running radio show in America still is staged during the winter months, and broadcast over WSM will be getting a major make-over.   The place where Roy Acuff, Minnie Pearl, and Ernest Tubb sang and performed for many years will be removed and replaced.    The stage where the stars of classic county once stood will be gone.

The stage is to be replaced by a more durable Brazilian teak, though an 18-inch lip of the blonde oak at the front will be retained for history’s sake. The original hickory support beams underneath will be reinforced with concrete foundations, crossbeams and joist work that will help triple the load capacity.

Many years ago the curtain that goes up at the Opry was replaced, with the old one cut into small sections and used as additions to certain album purchases.  I own one of those sections, and posted about it in 2008.  It would be wonderful if the old stage could be cut up into small sections and either auctioned off, or placed for sale.  I have the perfect place to show it off at home, and hope that the Opry owners are thinking of making use of the old stage floor.

What a story that old wood could tell.

One Comment
  1. Craig skip Weis permalink
    February 1, 2012 11:25 AM

    Really? That floor is going to fail if three times the designed the weight is placed on it? I understand that people are eating more and packing on the weight but this exceeds common sense.

    Wood is actually stronger then steel if thickness and density are considered. The trouble with wood is that it gives little warning when it’s about to fail and steel just gives and bends. You don’t park 104 ton yacht on steel but rather wood blocks.

    What’s going to happen on that stage next? A Radio Truck show featuring Larry the Cable Guy? Why do the youngsters coming up in life feel that everything old is no good and needs to be updated, replaced, or discarded? What about the ‘charm?’

    One of my great thrills was taking my high school girlfriend in 1967 to The Chicago Opera House for a performance of Giacomo Puccini’s Madame Butterfly. Pleased to say that a decade ago that the old charm of the stage is still there…it just would not be the same in a fire resistant sterile, cold, dull, and drab setting. I’d miss the musty smell.

    skip.

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