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Visiting Madame Tussauds in Music City

by Rich and Laura Lynch

It was hot as a firecracker on Tuesday, July 4, 2023 in Nashville, Tennessee so we decided to put our Community Passport provided by the Nashville Public Library to good use and head over to the air-conditioned confines of the Opry Mills Mall. Once inside, we would visit our many notable friends sculpted in wax courtesy of the handiwork of Madame Tussauds to see how they were holding up in the historic heat wave that had descended on Music City.

Rayna Jaymes and Deacon Claybourne are still together at Madame Tussauds Nashville.

Madame Tussaud was born in Strasbourg, France. She opened her first wax museum in London in 1835. At that time, her attraction featured the Chamber of Horrors which depicted victims of the French Revolution. Later, famous people such as Lord Nelson and Sir Walter Scott were added to the collection. Today, Madame Tussauds remains a popular tourist attraction in England. Some of her original sculptures still exist but most of her creations were destroyed by fire and WW II bombing runs. Museums bearing her name have expanded to cities around the world and in 2017 Nashville got their very own Madame Tussauds.

Since Nashville is known as Music City it was the ideal location to showcase a music themed wax museum. Madame Tussauds Nashville is located inside the expansive shopping mall which is next to the Grand Ole Opry in the region known as Music Valley. At the start of the tour is a short film hosted by WSM's Bill Cody. Each room in the museum has a theme and throughout there are informative guitar pics about the wax musicians. The first exhibit is Music Alley where visitors encounter a young Bob Dylan among a number of icons including Whitney Houston caught in the moment of singing the National Anthem at the 1991 Super Bowl.

The Prince of Darkness still looking good in Music City.

WSM Radio has a rich history with the Grand Ole Opry and a number of its stars are found here. We ran into the Million Dollar Quartet in the Recording Studio but watch out for Johnny Cash with his intense stare. There were more famous people to be found such as Jimi Hendrix who was near the Soul Lounge and a tribute to Jazz where Louie Armstrong was paired with Billie Holiday. At the Rock Bar we met an assorted crew consisting of 1980's Bruce Springsteen, Kid Rock, Ozzy and Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead.

We also enjoyed the illusion of standing on the Grand Ole Opry stage with some of its most popular members such as Reba. So, when you are in Music Valley come hear and see the artists at the Grand Ole Opry and Madame Tussauds. Madame Tussauds is also available for groups, parties, school visits and special events. They also have a gift shop where you can have a wax image made of your own hand.

Patsty Cline and Tammy Wynette in wax at WSM The Legend.

Related Links: For more information on MADAME TUSSAUDS NASHVILLE and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Madame Tussauds Nashville | Nashville Public Library | Madame Tussauds Now Open In Music City


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