A cornucopia of live musical entertainment awaits visitors to the Carolina Opry. The venue's namesake show has been running for 30 years, thrilling audiences and winning critical acclaim. The dazzling two-hour show, blending up-tempo music and dance, has been named Myrtle Beach's top attraction by CNBC and has won the coveted Governo's Cup tourism award.
The brainchild of Calvin Gilmore, once an aspiring singer/songwriter, the Opry grew from a 1,000-seat theater in Surfside Beach in 1986 to its present-day, 2,200-seat showplace home on Highway 17. The award-winning Carolina Opry lineup includes original cast member Rita Gumm, Nashville recording artist Brad Long, and Broadway veteran Tangena Church.
Other shows to sample at the theater include Good Vibrations, featuring the Opry cast gussied up in elaborate costumes and performing the toe-tapping hits of the 1960s, 70s and 80s; and Thunder and Light, a limited-run dance, laser and magic show featuring the nationally renowned hip-hop clogging group All That! and spotlighting the illusions of Brandon and Hannah Wagster. In another show option, Light, the lasers take center stage, set to the music of Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, and The Beatles. The theater also morphs into a winter wonderland each November and December for the down-home Carolina Opry Christmas Special.
Throughout the year, the theater plays host to a number of special events and concerts. On August 16, bluegrass legend Ricky Skaggs and his band, Kentucky Thunder, will take the Opry stage. A more localized extravaganza will entertain audiences on April 19, when the theatrical talents of Horry County students in grades K-12 will be on display in the third annual "Waves of the Future: Rotary's Celebration of Horry County Schools" event.
Show prices vary, and most live events include a pre-show. Season passes and various vacation, seasonal, and group packages are available. Tickets can be ordered online.