The Grand Ole Opry is a weekly country music stage concert in Nashville, Tennessee, that has presented the biggest stars of that genre since 1925. It is also among the longest-running broadcasts in history since its beginnings as a one-hour radio "barn dance" on WSM-AM. Dedicated to honoring country music and its history, the Opry showcases a mix of legends and contemporary chart-toppers performing country, bluegrass, folk, gospel, and comedic performances and skits. Considered an American icon, it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the World and millions of radio and internet listeners. The Opry, today part of the American landscape, is "the show that made country music famous" and has been called the "home of American music" and "country’s most famous stage."
Membership in the Opry remains one of country music's crowning achievements. Such country music legends as Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Roy Acuff, the Carter family, Bill Monroe, Ernest Tubb, Kitty Wells and Minnie Pearl became regulars on the Opry's stage (although Williams was banned in 1952 due to frequent drunkenness). The Grand Ole Opry started as the WSM Barn Dance in the new fifth-floor radio studio of the National Life & Accident Insurance Company in downtown Nashville on November 28, 1925.
Since 1974, the show has been broadcast from the Grand Ole Opry House east of downtown Nashville and performances have been sporadically televised in addition to the radio programs.