The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters are at Broadcasting House in Westminster, it is the world's oldest national broadcasting organisation and the largest broadcaster in the world by number of employees, it employs over 20,950 staff in total. The total number of staff is 35,402 when part-time and fixed-contract staff are included; the BBC is established under a Royal Charter and operates under its Agreement with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture and Sport. Its work is funded principally by an annual television licence fee, charged to all British households and organisations using any type of equipment to receive or record live television broadcasts and iPlayer catch-up; the fee is set by the British Government, agreed by Parliament, used to fund the BBC's radio, TV, online services covering the nations and regions of the UK. Since 1 April 2014, it has funded the BBC World Service, which broadcasts in 28 languages and provides comprehensive TV, online services in Arabic and Persian.
Around a quarter of BBC revenues come from its commercial arm BBC Studios Ltd, which sells BBC programmes and services internationally and distributes the BBC's international 24-hour English-language news services BBC World News, from BBC.com, provided by BBC Global News Ltd. From its inception, through the Second World War, to the 21st century, the BBC has played a prominent role in British culture, it is known colloquially as "The Beeb", "Auntie", or a combination of both. Britain's first live public broadcast from the Marconi factory in Chelmsford took place in June 1920, it was sponsored by the Daily Mail's Lord Northcliffe and featured the famous Australian soprano Dame Nellie Melba. The Melba broadcast caught the people's imagination and marked a turning point in the British public's attitude to radio. However, this public enthusiasm was not shared in official circles where such broadcasts were held to interfere with important military and civil communications. By late 1920, pressure from these quarters and uneasiness among the staff of the licensing authority, the General Post Office, was sufficient to lead to a ban on further Chelmsford broadcasts.
But by 1922, the GPO had received nearly 100 broadcast licence requests and moved to rescind its ban in the wake of a petition by 63 wireless societies with over 3,000 members. Anxious to avoid the same chaotic expansion experienced in the United States, the GPO proposed that it would issue a single broadcasting licence to a company jointly owned by a consortium of leading wireless receiver manufactures, to be known as the British Broadcasting Company Ltd. John Reith, a Scottish Calvinist, was appointed its General Manager in December 1922 a few weeks after the company made its first official broadcast; the company was to be financed by a royalty on the sale of BBC wireless receiving sets from approved domestic manufacturers. To this day, the BBC aims to follow the Reithian directive to "inform and entertain"; the financial arrangements soon proved inadequate. Set sales were disappointing as amateurs made their own receivers and listeners bought rival unlicensed sets. By mid-1923, discussions between the GPO and the BBC had become deadlocked and the Postmaster-General commissioned a review of broadcasting by the Sykes Committee.
The Committee recommended a short term reorganisation of licence fees with improved enforcement in order to address the BBC's immediate financial distress, an increased share of the licence revenue split between it and the GPO. This was to be followed by a simple 10 shillings licence fee with no royalty once the wireless manufactures protection expired; the BBC's broadcasting monopoly was made explicit for the duration of its current broadcast licence, as was the prohibition on advertising. The BBC was banned from presenting news bulletins before 19.00 and was required to source all news from external wire services. Mid-1925 found the future of broadcasting under further consideration, this time by the Crawford committee. By now, the BBC, under Reith's leadership, had forged a consensus favouring a continuation of the unified broadcasting service, but more money was still required to finance rapid expansion. Wireless manufacturers were anxious to exit the loss making consortium with Reith keen that the BBC be seen as a public service rather than a commercial enterprise.
The recommendations of the Crawford Committee were published in March the following year and were still under consideration by the GPO when the 1926 general strike broke out in May. The strike temporarily interrupted newspaper production, with restrictions on news bulletins waived, the BBC became the primary source of news for the duration of the crisis; the crisis placed the BBC in a delicate position. On one hand Reith was acutely aware that the Government might exercise its right to commandeer the BBC at any time as a mouthpiece of the Government if the BBC were to step out of line, but on the other he was anxious to maintain public trust by appearing to be acting independently; the Government was divided on how to handle the BBC but ended up trusting Reith, whose opposition to the strike mirrored the PM's own. Thus the BBC was granted sufficient leeway to pursue the Government's objectives in a manner of its own choosing; the resulting coverage of both striker and government viewpoints impressed millions of listeners who were unaware that the PM had broadcast to the nation from Reith's home, using one of Reith's sound bites inserted at the last moment
An audience is a group of people who participate in a show or encounter a work of art, theatre, video games, or academics in any medium. Audience members participate in different ways in different kinds of art. Media audience studies have become a recognized part of the curriculum. Audience theory offers scholarly insight into audiences in general; these insights shape our knowledge of just how audiences affect and are affected by different forms of art. The biggest art form is the mass media. Films, video games, radio shows and other formats are affected by the audience and its reviews and recommendations. In the age of easy internet participation and citizen journalism, professional creators share space, sometimes attention with the public. American journalist Jeff Jarvis said, "Give the people control of media, they will use it; the corollary: Don't give the people control of media, you will lose. Whenever citizens can exercise control, they will." Tom Curley, President of the Associated Press said, "The users are deciding what the point of their engagement will be — what application, what device, what time, what place."
In rhetoric, some audiences depend on circumstance and situation, are characterized by the individuals that make up the audience. Sometimes these audiences are subject to engage with the ideas of the speaker. Ranging in size and composition, this audience may come together and form a "composite" of multiple groups. An immediate audience is a type of audience, composed of individuals who are face-to-face subjects with a speaker and a speaker's rhetorical text or speech; this audience directly listens to, engages with, consumes the rhetorical text in an unmediated fashion. In measuring immediate audience reception and feedback, one can depend on personal interviews and verbal comments made during and after a rhetorical speech. In contrast to immediate audiences, mediated audiences are composed of individuals who consume rhetorical texts in a manner, different from the time or place in which a speaker presents text. Audiences who consume texts or speeches through television and internet are considered mediated audiences because those mediums separate the rhetor and the audience.
Such audiences are physically away from the audience and the message is controlled. Understanding the size and composition of mediated audiences can be difficult because mediums such as television and Internet can displace the audience from the time and circumstance of a rhetorical text or speech. In measuring mediated audience reception and feedback, one can depend on opinion polls and ratings, as well as comments and forums that may be featured on a website; this applies to may fields such as movies and much more. There are companies. Theoretical audiences are imagined for the purpose of helping a speaker compose, practice, or a critic to understand, a rhetorical text or speech; when a rhetor considers and deliberates over the content of the ideas they are conveying, it can be said that these individuals are addressing the audience of self, or self-deliberating. Scholars Chaim Perelman and L. Olbrechts-Tyteca, in their book The New Rhetoric: A Treatise on Argumentation, argue that the rhetor "is in a better position than anyone else to test the value of his own arguments."
The audience of self, while not serving as the ends to all rhetorical purpose or circumstance acts as a type of audience that not only operates as a function of self-help, but as instrument used to discover the available means of persuasion. The universal audience is an imagined audience that serves as an ethical and argumentative test for the rhetor; this requires the speaker to imagine a composite audience that contains individuals from diverse backgrounds and to discern whether or not the content of the rhetorical text or speech would appeal to individuals within that audience. Scholars Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca ascertain that the content addressed to a universal audience "must convince the reader that the reasons adduced are of a compelling character, that they are self-evident, possess an absolute and timeless validity"; the concept of the universal audience has received criticism for being idealistic because it can be considered as an impediment in achieving persuasive effect with particular audiences.
Yet, it still may be useful as an ethical guide for a speaker and a critical tool for a reader or audience. An ideal audience is a rhetor's imagined, intended audience. In creating a rhetorical text, a rhetor imagines is the target audience, a group of individuals that will be addressed, persuaded, or affected by the speech or rhetorical text; this type of audience is not imagined as the most receptive audience, but as the future particular audience that the rhetor will engage with. Imagining such an audience allows a rhetor to formulate appeals that will grant success in engaging with the future particular audience. In considering an ideal audience, a rhetor can imagine future conditions of mediation, size and shared beliefs among the audience to be persuaded. An implied audience is an imaginary audience determined by an auditor or reader as the text's constructed audience; the implied audience is not the actual audience, but the one that can be inferred by reading or analyzing the text. Communications scholar Edwin Black, in his essay, The Second Persona, presents the theoretical concep
Radio is the technology of signalling or communicating using radio waves. Radio waves are electromagnetic waves of frequency between 300 gigahertz, they are generated by an electronic device called a transmitter connected to an antenna which radiates the waves, received by a radio receiver connected to another antenna. Radio is widely used in modern technology, in radio communication, radio navigation, remote control, remote sensing and other applications. In radio communication, used in radio and television broadcasting, cell phones, two-way radios, wireless networking and satellite communication among numerous other uses, radio waves are used to carry information across space from a transmitter to a receiver, by modulating the radio signal in the transmitter. In radar, used to locate and track objects like aircraft, ships and missiles, a beam of radio waves emitted by a radar transmitter reflects off the target object, the reflected waves reveal the object's location. In radio navigation systems such as GPS and VOR, a mobile receiver receives radio signals from navigational radio beacons whose position is known, by measuring the arrival time of the radio waves the receiver can calculate its position on Earth.
In wireless remote control devices like drones, garage door openers, keyless entry systems, radio signals transmitted from a controller device control the actions of a remote device. Applications of radio waves which do not involve transmitting the waves significant distances, such as RF heating used in industrial processes and microwave ovens, medical uses such as diathermy and MRI machines, are not called radio; the noun radio is used to mean a broadcast radio receiver. Radio waves were first identified and studied by German physicist Heinrich Hertz in 1886; the first practical radio transmitters and receivers were developed around 1895-6 by Italian Guglielmo Marconi, radio began to be used commercially around 1900. To prevent interference between users, the emission of radio waves is regulated by law, coordinated by an international body called the International Telecommunications Union, which allocates frequency bands in the radio spectrum for different uses. Radio waves are radiated by electric charges undergoing acceleration.
They are generated artificially by time varying electric currents, consisting of electrons flowing back and forth in a metal conductor called an antenna. In transmission, a transmitter generates an alternating current of radio frequency, applied to an antenna; the antenna radiates the power in the current as radio waves. When the waves strike the antenna of a radio receiver, they push the electrons in the metal back and forth, inducing a tiny alternating current; the radio receiver connected to the receiving antenna detects this oscillating current and amplifies it. As they travel further from the transmitting antenna, radio waves spread out so their signal strength decreases, so radio transmissions can only be received within a limited range of the transmitter, the distance depending on the transmitter power, antenna radiation pattern, receiver sensitivity, noise level, presence of obstructions between transmitter and receiver. An omnidirectional antenna transmits or receives radio waves in all directions, while a directional antenna or high gain antenna transmits radio waves in a beam in a particular direction, or receives waves from only one direction.
Radio waves travel through a vacuum at the speed of light, in air at close to the speed of light, so the wavelength of a radio wave, the distance in meters between adjacent crests of the wave, is inversely proportional to its frequency. In radio communication systems, information is carried across space using radio waves. At the sending end, the information to be sent is converted by some type of transducer to a time-varying electrical signal called the modulation signal; the modulation signal may be an audio signal representing sound from a microphone, a video signal representing moving images from a video camera, or a digital signal consisting of a sequence of bits representing binary data from a computer. The modulation signal is applied to a radio transmitter. In the transmitter, an electronic oscillator generates an alternating current oscillating at a radio frequency, called the carrier wave because it serves to "carry" the information through the air; the information signal is used to modulate the carrier, varying some aspect of the carrier wave, impressing the information on the carrier.
Different radio systems use different modulation methods: AM - in an AM transmitter, the amplitude of the radio carrier wave is varied by the modulation signal. FM - in an FM transmitter, the frequency of the radio carrier wave is varied by the modulation signal. FSK - used in wireless digital devices to transmit digital signals, the frequency of the carrier wave is shifted periodically between two frequencies that represent the two binary digits, 0 and 1, to transmit a sequence of bits. OFDM - a family of complicated digital modulation methods widely used in high bandwidth systems such as WiFi networks, digital television broadcasting, digital audio broadcasting to transmit digital data using a minimum of radio spectrum bandwidth. OFDM has higher spectral efficiency and more resistance to fading than AM or FM. Multiple radio carrier waves spaced in frequency are transmitted within the radio channel, with each carrier modulated with bits from the incoming bitstream
Radio comedy, or comedic radio programming, is a radio broadcast that may involve sitcom elements and various types of comedy found on other media. It may include more surreal or fantastic elements, as these can be conveyed on a small budget with just a few sound effects or some simple dialogue. Radio comedy in the United States began when Raymond Knight launched The Cuckoo Hour on NBC in 1929, along with the 1931 network debut of Stoopnagle and Budd on CBS. Comedians such as Fred Allen, Jack Benny, Judy Canova, Bob Hope and Red Skelton were top-rated in the decades that followed. After the big name comedians moved to television, radio comedy continued, notably from Bob and Ray, The Firesign Theatre and segments heard on NBC's Monitor. Although traditional comedy was once a significant part of American broadcast radio programming, it is now found in the archives of Old Time Radio enthusiasts and on the Internet streaming of comedy recordings; the majority of mainstream radio comedy now consists of personality-driven shows hosted by talk-radio hosts such as Howard Stern or comedic duos such as Armstrong & Getty and Bob & Tom.
Exceptions to this are WSRN's "Audience of Two", Garrison Keillor's work on Minnesota Public Radio: A Prairie Home Companion and Comedy College, NPR's Car Talk, a comedy show thinly disguised as car advice, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!. Shows featuring comedic music are popular. Several networks program 24 hours a day of stand-up comedy routines. Rock music stations play bits of stand-up comedy within the bounds of their regular formats under the banner of a "five o'clock funnies" feature. In Britain and Canada, the BBC and CBC have continued making new radio comedy and drama. British radio comedy has a home on Australia's Radio National and in Ireland there are always a few comedy shows in the week's programming on RTÉ. A locally produced Australian comedic radio program is Hamish & Andy, in the United Kingdom an example is The Burkiss Way. Many of the BBC's most successful television comedies began life as radio shows; these include Hancock's Half Hour, Goodness Gracious Me, Knowing Me, Knowing You, The League of Gentlemen, Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Room 101, Have I Got News For You, Dead Ringers and most Little Britain and Absolute Power.
The science fiction comedy Red Dwarf was developed from ideas in a radio show called Son Of Cliché. Another science fiction comedy The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy was created for radio, but went on to great success in book and film formats. Examples of American radio comedy can be heard on streaming internet radio stations. Humorous storytelling is the focus of The Moth Radio Hour. Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion can be heard on public radio stations in the United States and a different version of the shows can be heard on BBC Radio 4 Extra and RTÉ under the name Garrison Keillor's Radio Show. Old shows can be listened to online at the websites of "A Prairie Home Companion" or RTÉ. British radio comedy can be heard on BBC Radio 2 and BBC Radio 4 Extra. Minnesota Public Radio maintains a website where it is possible to listen to episodes of Comedy College. A British commercial station Oneword broadcast American vintage radio comedy as part of their 24-hour-a-day programming of books and drama and this was streamed on the internet until the station closed in 2008.
Interest in radio comedy and radio drama is enjoying a resurgence. Epguides.com, which provides encyclopedic information on television shows, has begun to build a similar list of radio shows. In America, new groups have formed to try to bring about a renewed interest in the art-form. At the forefront of this new wave of audio-only comedic groups is Peeper Radio Theatre. Veteran NPR Producer Joe Bevilacqua is creating new radio comedy for The Comedy-O-Rama Hour, which airs on XM Satellite Radio's Sonic Theater Channel 163, five times per week. In the UK, recent standup and revue comedy performances are now receiving airing on radio. Books on the radio List of old-time radio people List of radio comedies Necrology of Old Radio Personalities OTR Actors and Their Roles
Hollywood is a neighborhood in the central region of Los Angeles, notable as the home of the U. S. film industry, including several of its historic studios. Its name has come to be a shorthand reference for the people associated with it. Hollywood was incorporated as a municipality in 1903, it was consolidated with the city of Los Angeles in 1910 and soon thereafter, a prominent film industry emerged becoming the most recognizable film industry in the world. In 1853, one adobe hut stood in Nopalera, named for the Mexican Nopal cactus indigenous to the area. By 1870, an agricultural community flourished; the area was known as the Cahuenga Valley, after the pass in the Santa Monica Mountains to the north. According to the diary of H. J. Whitley known as the "Father of Hollywood", on his honeymoon in 1886 he stood at the top of the hill looking out over the valley. Along came a Chinese man in a wagon carrying wood; the man bowed. The Chinese man was asked what he was doing and replied, "I holly-wood," meaning'hauling wood.'
H. J. Whitley decided to name his new town Hollywood. "Holly" would represent England and "wood" would represent his Scottish heritage. Whitley had started over 100 towns across the western United States. Whitley arranged to buy the 480 acres E. C. Hurd ranch, they shook hands on the deal. Whitley shared his plans for the new town with General Harrison Gray Otis, publisher of the Los Angeles Times, Ivar Weid, a prominent businessman in the area. Daeida Wilcox learned of the name Hollywood from Ivar Weid, her neighbor in Holly Canyon and a prominent investor and friend of Whitley's, she recommended the same name to Harvey. H. Wilcox, who had purchased 120 acres on February 1, 1887, it wasn't until August 1887 Wilcox decided to use that name and filed with the Los Angeles County Recorder's office on a deed and parcel map of the property. The early real-estate boom busted at the end of that year. By 1900, the region had a post office, newspaper and two markets. Los Angeles, with a population of 102,479 lay 10 miles east through the vineyards, barley fields, citrus groves.
A single-track streetcar line ran down the middle of Prospect Avenue from it, but service was infrequent and the trip took two hours. The old citrus fruit-packing house was converted into a livery stable, improving transportation for the inhabitants of Hollywood; the Hollywood Hotel was opened in 1902 by H. J. Whitley, a president of the Los Pacific Boulevard and Development Company. Having acquired the Hurd ranch and subdivided it, Whitley built the hotel to attract land buyers. Flanking the west side of Highland Avenue, the structure fronted on Prospect Avenue, still a dusty, unpaved road, was graded and graveled; the hotel was to become internationally known and was the center of the civic and social life and home of the stars for many years. Whitley's company sold one of the early residential areas, the Ocean View Tract. Whitley did much to promote the area, he paid thousands of dollars for electric lighting, including bringing electricity and building a bank, as well as a road into the Cahuenga Pass.
The lighting ran for several blocks down Prospect Avenue. Whitley's land was centered on Highland Avenue, his 1918 development, Whitley Heights, was named for him. Hollywood was incorporated as a municipality on November 14, 1903, by a vote of 88 for and 77 against. On January 30, 1904, the voters in Hollywood decided, by a vote of 113 to 96, for the banishment of liquor in the city, except when it was being sold for medicinal purposes. Neither hotels nor restaurants were allowed to serve liquor before or after meals. In 1910, the city voted for merger with Los Angeles in order to secure an adequate water supply and to gain access to the L. A. sewer system. With annexation, the name of Prospect Avenue changed to Hollywood Boulevard and all the street numbers were changed. By 1912, major motion-picture companies had set up production in Los Angeles. In the early 1900s, most motion picture patents were held by Thomas Edison's Motion Picture Patents Company in New Jersey, filmmakers were sued to stop their productions.
To escape this, filmmakers began moving out west to Los Angeles, where attempts to enforce Edison's patents were easier to evade. The weather was ideal and there was quick access to various settings. Los Angeles became the capital of the film industry in the United States; the mountains and low land prices made Hollywood a good place to establish film studios. Director D. W. Griffith was the first to make a motion picture in Hollywood, his 17-minute short film In Old California was filmed for the Biograph Company. Although Hollywood banned movie theaters—of which it had none—before annexation that year, Los Angeles had no such restriction; the first film by a Hollywood studio, Nestor Motion Picture Company, was shot on October 26, 1911. The H. J. Whitley home was used as its set, the unnamed movie was filmed in the middle of their groves at the corner of Whitley Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard; the first studio in Hollywood, the Nestor Company, was established by the New Jersey–based Centaur Company in a roadhouse at 6121 Sunset Boulevard, in October 1911.
Four major film companies – Paramount, Warner Bros. RKO, Columbia – had studios in Hollywood, as did several minor companies and rental studios. In the 1920s, Hollywood was the fifth-largest industry in the nation. By the 1930s, Hollywood studios became vertically integrated, as production and exhibition was controlled by these companies, enabling Hollywood to produce 600 films per year. H
The National Broadcasting Company is an American English-language commercial terrestrial television network, a flagship property of NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast. The network is headquartered at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, with additional major offices near Los Angeles and Philadelphia; the network is one of the Big Three television networks. NBC is sometimes referred to as the "Peacock Network", in reference to its stylized peacock logo, introduced in 1956 to promote the company's innovations in early color broadcasting, it became the network's official emblem in 1979. Founded in 1926 by the Radio Corporation of America, NBC is the oldest major broadcast network in the United States. At that time the parent company of RCA was General Electric. In 1930, GE was forced to sell the companies as a result of antitrust charges. In 1986, control of NBC passed back to General Electric through its $6.4 billion purchase of RCA. Following the acquisition by GE, Bob Wright served as chief executive officer of NBC, remaining in that position until his retirement in 2007, when he was succeeded by Jeff Zucker.
In 2003, French media company Vivendi merged its entertainment assets with GE, forming NBC Universal. Comcast purchased a controlling interest in the company in 2011, acquired General Electric's remaining stake in 2013. Following the Comcast merger, Zucker left NBCUniversal and was replaced as CEO by Comcast executive Steve Burke. NBC has thirteen owned-and-operated stations and nearly 200 affiliates throughout the United States and its territories, some of which are available in Canada and/or Mexico via pay-television providers or in border areas over-the-air. During a period of early broadcast business consolidation, radio manufacturer Radio Corporation of America acquired New York City radio station WEAF from American Telephone & Telegraph. Westinghouse, a shareholder in RCA, had a competing outlet in Newark, New Jersey pioneer station WJZ, which served as the flagship for a loosely structured network; this station was transferred from Westinghouse to RCA in 1923, moved to New York City. WEAF acted as a laboratory for AT&T's manufacturing and supply outlet Western Electric, whose products included transmitters and antennas.
The Bell System, AT&T's telephone utility, was developing technologies to transmit voice- and music-grade audio over short and long distances, using both wireless and wired methods. The 1922 creation of WEAF offered a research-and-development center for those activities. WEAF maintained a regular schedule of radio programs, including some of the first commercially sponsored programs, was an immediate success. In an early example of "chain" or "networking" broadcasting, the station linked with Outlet Company-owned WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island. C. WCAP. New parent RCA saw an advantage in sharing programming, after getting a license for radio station WRC in Washington, D. C. in 1923, attempted to transmit audio between cities via low-quality telegraph lines. AT&T refused outside companies access to its high-quality phone lines; the early effort fared poorly, since the uninsulated telegraph lines were susceptible to atmospheric and other electrical interference. In 1925, AT&T decided that WEAF and its embryonic network were incompatible with the company's primary goal of providing a telephone service.
AT&T offered to sell the station to RCA in a deal that included the right to lease AT&T's phone lines for network transmission. RCA spent $1 million to purchase WEAF and Washington sister station WCAP, shut down the latter station, merged its facilities with surviving station WRC; the division's ownership was split among RCA, its founding corporate parent General Electric and Westinghouse. NBC started broadcasting on November 15, 1926. WEAF and WJZ, the flagships of the two earlier networks, were operated side-by-side for about a year as part of the new NBC. On January 1, 1927, NBC formally divided their respective marketing strategies: the "Red Network" offered commercially sponsored entertainment and music programming. Various histories of NBC suggest the color designations for the two networks came from the color of the pushpins NBC engineers used to designate affiliate stations of WEAF and WJZ, or from the use of double-ended red and blue colored pencils. On April 5, 1927, NBC expanded to the West Coast with the launch of the NBC Orange Network known as the Pacific Coast Network.
This was followed by the debut of the NBC Gold Network known as the Pacific Gold Network, on October 18, 1931. The Orange Network carried Red Network programming, the Gold Network carried programming from the Blue Network; the Orange Network recreated Eastern Red Network programming for West Coast stations at KPO in San Francisco. In 1936, the Orange Network affiliate stations became part of the Red Network, at the same time the Gold Network became part of the Blue Network. In the 1930s, NBC developed a network for shortwave radio stations, called the NBC White Network. In 1927, NBC moved its operations to 711 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, occupying the upper floors of a building de
Grand Ole Opry
The Grand Ole Opry is a weekly American country music stage concert in Nashville, Tennessee founded on November 28, 1925, by George D. Hay as a one-hour radio "barn dance" on WSM. Owned and operated by Opry Entertainment, it is the longest running radio broadcast in US history. Dedicated to honoring country music and its history, the Opry showcases a mix of famous singers and contemporary chart-toppers performing country, Americana and gospel music as well as comedic performances and skits, it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors from around the world and millions of radio and internet listeners. The Opry's current primary slogan is "The Show That Made Country Music Famous." Other slogans include "Home of American Music" and "Country's Most Famous Stage."In the 1930s, the show began hiring professionals and expanded to four hours. Broadcasting by at 50,000 watts, WSM made the program a Saturday night musical tradition in nearly 30 states. In 1939, it debuted nationally on NBC Radio; the Opry moved to a permanent home, the Ryman Auditorium, in 1943.
As it developed in importance, so did the city of Nashville, which became America's "country music capital." The Grand Ole Opry holds such significance in Nashville that its name is included on the city/county line signs on all major roadways. The signs read "Music City|Metropolitan Nashville Davidson County|Home of the Grand Ole Opry." Membership in the Opry remains one of country music's crowning achievements. Since 1974, the show has been broadcast from the Grand Ole Opry House east of downtown Nashville, with an annual three-month winter foray back to the Ryman since 1999. In addition to the radio programs, performances have been sporadically televised over the years; 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. On October 17, 1925, management began a program featuring "Dr. Humphrey Bate and his string quartet of old-time musicians." On November 2, WSM hired long-time announcer and program director George D.
"Judge" Hay, an enterprising pioneer from the National Barn Dance program at WLS in Chicago, named the most popular radio announcer in America as a result of his radio work with both WLS and WMC in Memphis, Tennessee. Hay launched the WSM Barn Dance with 77-year-old fiddler Uncle Jimmy Thompson on November 28, 1925, that date is celebrated as the birth date of the Grand Ole Opry; some of the bands on the show during its early days included Bill Monroe, the Possum Hunters, the Fruit Jar Drinkers with Uncle Dave Macon, the Crook Brothers, the Binkley Brothers' Dixie Clodhoppers, Sid Harkreader, Deford Bailey, Fiddlin' Arthur Smith, the Gully Jumpers. Judge Hay liked the Fruit Jar Drinkers and asked them to appear last on each show because he wanted to always close each segment with "red hot fiddle playing." They were the second band accepted with the Crook Brothers being the first. When the Opry began having square dancers on the show, the Fruit Jar Drinkers always played for them. In 1926, Uncle Dave Macon, a Tennessee banjo player who had recorded several songs and toured on the vaudeville circuit became its first real star.
The phrase "Grand Ole Opry" was first uttered on radio on December 10, 1927. At the time, the NBC Red Network's Music Appreciation Hour, a program with classical music and selections from grand opera, was followed by Barn Dance. Opry presenter George Hay introduced the programme: For the past hour, we have been listening to music taken from Grand Opera. From now on, we will present the "Grand Ole Opry." As audiences for the live show increased, National Life & Accident Insurance's radio venue became too small to accommodate the hordes of fans. They built a larger studio. After several months with no audiences, National Life decided to allow the show to move outside its home offices. In October 1934, the Opry moved into then-suburban Hillsboro Theatre before moving to the Dixie Tabernacle in East Nashville on June 13, 1936; the Opry moved to the War Memorial Auditorium, a downtown venue adjacent to the State Capitol, a 25-cent admission fee was charged to try to curb the large crowds, but to no avail.
On June 5, 1943, the Opry moved to Ryman Auditorium. Top-charting country music acts performed at the Opry during the Ryman years, including Roy Acuff – called the King of Country Music – Hank Williams, Webb Pierce, Faron Young, Martha Carson, Lefty Frizzell, many others. One hour of the Opry was nationally broadcast by the NBC Red Network from 1939 to 1956, for much of its run, it aired one hour after the program that had inspired it, National Barn Dance; the NBC segment known by the name of its sponsor, The Prince Albert Show, was first hosted by Acuff, succeeded by Red Foley from 1946 to 1954. From October 15, 1955 to September 1956, ABC-TV aired a live, hour-long television version once a month on Saturday nights that pre-empted one hour of the then-90-minute Ozark Jubilee. From 1955 to 1957, Al Gannaway owned and produced both The Country Show and Stars of the Grand Ole Opry, both filmed programs syndicated by Flamingo Films. Gannaway's Stars of the Grand Ole Opry was the first television show shot in color.
On October 2, 1954, a teenage Elvis Presley had his only Opry performance. Although the audience reacted politely to his revolutionary brand of rockabilly music, Opry manager Jim Denny told Presley's producer Sam Phillips after the show that the singer's style did not suit the program. In the 1960s, as the hippie counterculture movement spread, the Opry maintained a strait-laced, conservative ima