Lauren Alaina is officially the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry!
On Saturday evening (Feb. 12), the country superstar was welcomed as the newest (and youngest) member of the Grand Ole Opry by her friend and mentor Trisha Yearwood. The famed Nashville stage was the first major stage that the Georgia native played, just one week after she was named runner-up on Season 10 of American Idol.
“I’m happy for you, a lot of people love you, and I’m honored to be here tonight, but there’s also a video of someone that wants to say congratulations and this is an artist who is a hero of yours. I mean, she’s a hero of everybody,” Yearwood told Alaina before introducing a video of Dolly Parton, welcoming her into the Opry family.
As Alaina turned to watch clip on the Opry stage, she went into complete shock upon seeing and hearing Parton, leaving her at a loss for words.
“Hello Lauren, it’s Dolly!” Parton said. “Well, you and I have a lot in common… We both started young, we love country music, and we love the Grand Ole Opry and I would give a million dollars if I could be there with Trisha and Garth and all the folks that love you to get you inducted into the Grand Ole Opry. I just want to wish you the best in your whole career. We love ya!”
After the clip played, Alaina said “She said my name!” to which Yearwood replied, “She knows all about you!”
Yearwood then had the honor and privilege to welcome Alaina as the newest member of the Grand Ole Opry.
“You are now officially a member of the Grand Ole Opry!” Yearwood said, handing Alaina her trophy.
Overcome with emotion after being inducted as she received a standing ovation, Alaina thanked Yearwood.
“Ever since I was a little girl I dreamed of this moment,” Alaina said while standing in the sacred Opry circle. “Both of my parents raised me with an appreciation for country music and all that it is, and all of the people who have come before me. I just want to say I promise to do everything I can to represent country music. I promise to represent this family well. I have felt like family here as long as I remember. Everyone at the Opry has always made me feel like family so for me to finally be officially in is the biggest dream come true of all time. Most little girls dreamed of their wedding; I dreamed of this. God Bless you guys and God bless country music.”
Watch Alaina’s induction and performance beginning at 1:12:47 in the below clip.
Following her induction, Yearwood surprised Alaina before their performance of Yearwood’s classic hit, “Walkaway Joe,” introducing her husband and country superstar, Garth Brooks, to the stage to play guitar for them as they sang the tune.
Alaina, joined by Yearwood and Brooks, then performed fan-favorite hit.
Since making her Opry debut on June 10, 2011, Alaina has appeared on the Opry more than 50 times.