Ryman Auditorium | Tennessee Vacation

Ryman Auditorium

Ryman Auditorium is a National Historic Landmark and an essential stop for anyone visiting Nashville. Most famous as the home of the Grand Ole Opry from 1943 to 1974, the stunning venue’s history as Nashville's premier theater and central gathering place started even before construction was complete in 1892. It is truly the cultural epicenter of Music City.

Take the self-guided tour where you’ll discover the divine inspiration behind the building's construction as the Union Gospel Tabernacle in the 1880s. Explore its rich entertainment history and learn how the Ryman became known as the "Carnegie Hall of the South" during the years when Caruso and Sousa performed, Theodore Roosevelt spoke, Houdini escaped and so much more in the 5th Avenue vestibule timeline exhibit. 

Three exhibits are now open: "Grand Ole Opry 1940s-1970s," "Ryman Stage to Screen" and "Proud to Be Here! The Legacy of Minnie Pearl." See genuine artifacts from those early Opry years such as the dress Dolly Parton wore the night she was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry. See a costume Sissy Spacek wore when she played Loretta Lynn in "Coal Miner's Daughter" filmed at the Ryman. Watch exclusive Minnie Pearl footage and see the National Medal of the Arts she received from former president George H.W. Bush. Listen to the "Voices of the Ryman" audio tour and hear Garrison Keillor and Marty Stuart share their Ryman experiences with you.

Take a guided backstage tour through dressing rooms dedicated to the stars of the Ryman's rich musical past, including Minnie Pearl and Hank Williams. These same dressing rooms are used by all the biggest stars performing today from Brad Paisley to Bruce Springsteen.

Look out on the famous "Ryman Alley" where the stars cross over to the honky tonks, and the Everly Brothers were discovered by Mr. Guitar, Chet Atkins. Finally, stand in the wings where performers as varied as Katharine Hepburn, Elvis Presley and James Brown stood awaiting their time in the spotlight. Then, take your place center-stage for your one-of-a-kind photo souvenir!

Do you sing? Visit the Ryman's recording studio and cut your own CD! Choose from a selection of classic songs or bring an original composition of your own and let our sound engineer record your rendition right in the Ryman Auditorium. Your Ryman Records CD — labeled with your name and song — will make a great souvenir or special gift. View pricing and learn more about scheduling a recording here