By Bob Hamill
In my travels around the area I had heard there was another walk down memory lane theater besides the Pigeon Forge legend, Memories show. People would ask me where they could see the show that pays tribute to Patsy Cline. I was in the dark. About a week ago I drove past the Shops at Pigeon Forge shopping center on the corner of Teaster and Wears Valley Rd. And there it was, Tribute Theater.
In the past, I didn’t think too much of a strip mall theater but this one is different. In place of the normal folding chairs, this is true theater seating with a bonus, leg room. The sound was excellent and lighting is basic but the experience is excellent.
Showtime is 7:00 PM but a pre-show features a terrific singer, Jack Reed who does a wonderful job doing Elvis as well as himself. The producers of the show Carol Glass-Cooper and Mike Cooper are also the stars of the show. I wasn’t too sure if I would like a complete show featuring one singer. While I like Patsy Cline I was concerned.
Carol and Mike have it covered and if you think “Crazy” is the only song associated with Patsy you will be surprised. At the start of the show Carol tells you she does not like doing parts of a song and then leave you hanging. She was going to do 25 songs in their entirety. The history of Patsy is served with touches of trivia and song. Did you know she got her start by walking into a radio station when she was 15 and telling the host of the show she wanted to sang. He let her and the rest is history.
Mike earns his keep doing songs made famous by George Jones, Freddie Fender, Conway Twitty, George Strait, Jim Reeves and others. Neither, Carol nor George are impersonators but they do songs in the style of the artist. The have a good rapport with the audience as well as themselves. Somehow they make dialogue fresh even if you know they do the same thing every performance.
In all, I became a Patsy Cline fan and learned a lot of the history of this legendary performer. Shows are only Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. If you are looking for an intimate evening with performers that love what they’re doing and share that love with the audience, this is the show for you.