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Ryman Auditorium Named Pollstar Theatre of the Year

Ryman General Manager, Sally Williams, named Facility Executive of the Year

The historic Ryman Auditorium was named Theatre of the year Saturday night at the twenty-six annual Pollstar Awards. The award was voted on by industry peers and is widely regarded as the most prestigious in the concert industry. This win marks an unprecedented fifth year in a row that the Ryman has been named Theatre of the Year by Pollstar. Since 1994, the Ryman has won the award a total of seven times. The iconic Nashville venue has a capacity of 2,362 and rounded out 2014 ranked sixteenth worldwide by Pollstar for ticket sales in the Theatre category. Nominated alongside the Ryman for Theatre of the Year were five other venues: Beacon Theatre New York City (cap. 2,829), Chicago Theatre Chicago (cap. 3,604), Fox Theatre Atlanta (cap. 4,678), Nokia Theatre L.A. Live Los Angeles (cap. 7,100) and Radio City Music Hall, New York City (cap. 6,013).

“I’m so proud of the Ryman team,” said Sally Williams, Ryman Auditorium General Manager. “They work incredibly hard to care for this building, for our guests, for our industry partners and for the artists who play our stage. We are very grateful for the recognition.”

Williams also was named Facility Executive of the Year for the second time during the ceremony. Under Williams leadership, the Ryman has garnered multiple awards including the SRO Venue of the Year Presented by CMA in 2014, 2013 and 2012; Pollstar Magazine’s 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010 Theatre of the Year; the Academy of Country Music’s 2012, 2010 and 2008 Venue of the Year; and the International Entertainment Buyers Association’s 2014 and 2009 Venue of the Year. Williams was chosen as Pollstar Magazine’s 2014 and 2013 Facility Executive of the Year, the International Entertainment Buyers Association’s 2012 Venue Executive of the Year and the Academy of Country Music’s 2010 Promoter of the Year. Williams is President-Elect of the Country Music Association, the Past-President of Leadership Music and the Chairperson for the Hospitality Committee of the Music City Music Council.

“The Ryman Auditorium management team remains keenly focused on delivering an exceptional experience for all,” said Steve Buchanan, Opry Entertainment President. “We greatly appreciate that our peers in the concert industry continue to acknowledge the passion and commitment displayed by Sally Williams and her entire team.”

In October 2014, the Ryman broke ground on an improvement project that will expand and renovate the support structure that was added as part of the 1994 addition to the venue. The project includes the addition of a new café, box office, larger lobbies, enhanced food and beverage services, additional restroom facilities, an expanded retail store as well as a new state-of-the art theatre attraction as part of the daytime tour experience.

Upcoming shows at the Ryman include: Lee Brice with Tyler Farr and Maddie & Tae February 24, Punch Brothers February 27, Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors with Holly Williams February 28, Sam’s Place – Music for the Spirit featuring host Steven Curtis Chapman and guests: Amy Grant, Bear & Bo Rinehart of NEEDTOBREATHE, The Isaacs and Laura Story March 1, Willie Nelson March 3 & 4, Gov’t Mule featuring John Scofield March 5, Santana March 11, Hozier with George Ezra March 14, 16 & 17, The Sing-Off March 15, The Beach Boys March 22, Dr. Dog with mewithoutYou March 27, Brian Regan March 29, Vince Gill and Friends March 31, Damien Rice April 1, Blackberry Smoke April 3, Mat Kearney with Parachute and Judah & The Lion April 4, Sam’s Place – Music for the Spirit featuring host Steven Curtis Chapman and guests: Charles Esten, Fairfield Four, Francesca Battistelli, Jason Crabb and McCrary Sisters April 5, Shawn Mendes April 11, The Decemberists April 13, Primus & The Chocolate Factory with The Fungi Ensemble April 15, Joel McHale April 17, Nick Kroll & John Mulaney April 18, Anjelah Johnson April 19, Diana Krall April 21, Halestorm with The Pretty Reckless and Starset April 22, Ten Out of Tenn April 24, Ryan Adams with Natalie Prass April 27 & 28, Death Cab for Cutie with The Antlers April 29, Sam’s Place – Music for the Spirit featuring host Steven Curtis Chapman and guests: Brandon Heath, Crowder, Diamond Rio and Ray Stevens May 3, Lord Huron with Leon Bridges May 6, A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor May 9, Georgia On My Mind with The Peach Pickers and Friends May 12, Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo May 13, Nick Offerman & Megan Mullally May 15, for KING & COUNTRY May 22, “Weird Al" Yankovic May 23 and Michael McDonald June 12. Additional programming includes the annual Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman series on Thursdays June 25 – July 30 and eight nights Amy Grant & Vince Gill Christmas at the Ryman December 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 22 and 23. All shows are on sale now and available at ryman.com.