The time for Ridge Roberts’ appearance at the Grand Ole Opry is almost here.
The phenomenal 18-year-old Hood County fiddler will be performing there on the stage in Nashville on the evening of Saturday, Sept. 4. He was invited to play there as a result of winning the Open Division of the 2019 Grand Master Fiddle Championship, which was also in Nashville. Roberts’ appearance on the big stage had to be postponed last year, however, because the Grand Ole Opry shut down its shows in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s hard to believe that the big day is drawing so near, but as it does, the realization is setting in ... I’m playing the Opry!” Roberts told the Hood County News this week in an email.
The Opry regularly invites the annual Grand Master fiddle champions to play on stage at The Opry, although for only 45 seconds instead of a full song or performance. Two other fiddlers from other divisions in the 2019 Grand Masters competition are also scheduled to play 45-second segments Saturday evening.
The headliners scheduled to perform starting at 7 p.m. on the stage that night, according to the Grand Ole Opry’s website, currently include Henry Cho, Jackie Lee, Niko Moon, Anne Wilson and Darryl Worley. Worley, 56, has released 18 singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, including three No. 1 hits.
Ridge’s mother, Cindy Roberts, told the HCN on Friday that she and her husband, John, don’t know when their son will taking the stage, but they were told to arrive at The Opry by 5 p.m.
According to a Grand Ole Opry representative, the last hour of the headliners’ stage performances that night will be aired live, on Circle TV. The audio of the headliners performances will be heard live on WSM radio, 650 AM, and on “Willie’s Roadhouse” through Sirius XM Channel 59.
In addition to his parents, several other relatives and friends are planning to be on hand in the audience at The Opry to see the Sept. 4 show in person, Cindy said. They include Cindy’s mother and father, Ruben and Mary of Joshua; Cindy’s nephew, Robert Pesqueda, an Army soldier stationed in Georgia; and Ridge’s girlfriend and her mother, from Glen Rose.