AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X: The Foundation of the Ultimate Country Music Fan Experience Scott Frans May 6, 2015 Continuous Music on Three Stages, Autographs, Lifestyle Exhibits, Prize Giveaways, and Hunter Hayes, Little Big Town, Darius Rucker, and Chris Young are Featured Artists of the Day! NASHVILLE – AT&T U-verse® Fan Fair X is the center of the fan/artist experience at CMA Music Festival, the Ultimate Country Music Fan Experience. “This event started as Fan Fair in 1972 as an annual celebration of the relationship between our loyal fans and the artists they admire,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer. “AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X is the apex of that vision, the centerpiece of our most popular artist experiences with autograph signings, celebrity panels, non-stop concerts, and more.” With 353,000 square feet of artist booths, a marketplace, exciting interactive experiences, lifestyle exhibits, activities for children, an auction, and three stages at the Music City Center, fans have numerous options to keep them busy Thursday through Sunday, June 11-14 (10:00 AM-5:00 PM). Venue doors open at 9:00 AM/CT Friday through Sunday, June 12-14; 8:30 AM Thursday, June 11. Returning for the third time in 2015 as the title sponsor of Fan Fair X is AT&T U-verse. “AT&T is proud to sponsor the Ultimate Fan Experience during CMA Music Festival for the third consecutive year. The Festival gets better each year, and we’re excited about what’s in store for fans at AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X,” said Brian Collins, Vice President of Wireline Consumer Marketing, AT&T Home Solutions. “We love Country Music fans, and we’re thrilled to work with CMA again this year.” Artist of the Day Artist of the Day Little Big Town will kick things off on Thursday, June 11 (9:15 AM/CT). The three-time CMA Vocal Group of the Year will cut the ribbon officially opening AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X for the fans. Following the ribbon cutting, Little Big Town will appear and answer fan questions on the CMA Close Up Stage (10:15 AM/CT). Each morning, a different Artist of the Day will take to the CMA Close Up Stage to jump-start the day’s activities (10:15 AM-11:00 AM/CT). Friday’s Artist of the Day will be Hunter Hayes followed by Chris Young on Saturday, and Darius Rucker on Sunday. “Our fans really enjoy the Artist of the Day experience because it gives them a glimpse behind the curtain,” said Trahern. “Artist of the Day provides an opportunity to learn more about what life as an artist – at home and on the road – is like for these incredible performers.” Benefiting Music Education Each day, the Artist of the Day will autograph an item that will be immediately auctioned from the stage to benefit the CMA Foundation and music education programs for deserving students. The central fixture of the Festival is the relationship between the artists and their fans, but the real beneficiaries are the tens of thousands of students who now have access to music education programs across the country thanks to the artists and fans who attend CMA Music Festival. Since 2006, CMA and the CMA Foundation have donated more than $11 million to support music education initiatives nationwide from New York City to Los Angeles. Another popular feature of the AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X is the CMA Foundation Auction benefiting music education with memorabilia and artist experiences available to the highest bidder. In 2014, the Auction raised more than $100,000 and included more than 100 items including meet and greets, guitars, autographed merchandise, and more from stars and celebrities. Artists included in the 2015 CMA Foundation Auction include Jason Aldean, Garth Brooks, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Ariana Grande, Hunter Hayes, Sam Hunt, Little Big Town, A Thousand Horses, Meghan Trainor, and Zac Brown Band. AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X will once again feature THREE indoor stages: the AT&T U-verse Showcase Stage, featuring acoustic performances by rising talent and established stars; the CMA Close Up Stage with superstar panels and more; and the Durango Music Spot, which features performances programmed by storied powerhouse radio station WSM-AM. AT&T U-verse Showcase Stage The AT&T U-verse Showcase Stage will be the place to discover some of the best up-and-coming talent, rising stars, and familiar favorites. Performers include (in alphabetical order) Lauren Alaina, Katie Armiger, Craig Campbell, Amber Carrington, Kristy Lee Cook, Joel Crouse, Jessie James Decker, Travis Denning, Eric Dodd, Cale Dodds, Elizabeth Huett, Savannah Keyes, Ryan Kinder, Love and Theft, Rachele Lynae, Dustin Lynch, MamaDear, Kristen Merlin, Katie Ohh, Angaleena Presley, Rainey Qualley, Ray Scott, Sister C, The Railers, Aaron Watson, and more to be announced. Artists and schedule are subject to change. One exciting addition to the lineup could be a fan! The Country Deep™ Rising Star Contest is offering one brand new artist a chance to attend the 2015 CMA Music Festival and perform on the AT&T U-verse Showcase Stage. Entries are open through May 10 at risingstar.att.com.* Fans will also be able to experience AT&T U-verse TV, the exclusive home of Country Deep™. Country Deep showcases Country Music and emerging talent through a collection of new and original programming available on U-verse TV, mobile, tablet, and online at uverse.com/countrydeep and @CountyDeepTV. AT&T has special network equipment that has been installed in and around the Music City Center, Lower Broadway, Bridgestone Arena, and LP Field to keep CMA Fest fans connected so they can have a great mobile experience while sharing their favorite moments at the CMA Music Festival this year. CMA Close Up Stage The crown jewel of the AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X experience is the CMA Close Up Stage where fans can get up close and personal with their favorite artists. The CMA Close Up Stage is growing from 600 to more than 800 seats (with additional standing room) due to the enormous popularity of the stage in 2014, with intimate performances, interactive panels, informative presentations, and more. A complete list of panels and performances is available online at CMAfest.com, but in addition to the Artist of the Day programs each morning some of the highlights include: A panel with the 2015 Country Music Hall of Fame inductees Jim Ed Brown and The Oak Ridge Boys CMA Songwriters Series featuring Sara Evans Kristian Bush and Friends “American Country Countdown” with Kix Brooks Q&A with Kellie Pickler Jim Halsey Starmaker Panel: starring Roy Clark and Special Guests Singer and star of ABC Television Network’s “Nashville,” Charles Esten SESAC Songwriters A discussion with stars of the Grand Ole Opry Celebrating female songwriters, the Song Suffragettes with special guest Jamie O’Neal Between programming on the CMA Close Up Stage, fans will be treated to the CMA Prize Wheel offering opportunities to win Ultimate Fan Experiences. Durango Music Spot A perennial favorite with attendees, the Durango Music Spot will bustle all four days with music from Festival favorites including (in alphabetical order and subject to change): Darin & Brooke Aldridge, Rex Allen, Jr., Bill Anderson, Lynn Anderson, Baillie & The Boys, David Ball, Moe Bandy, Bobby Bare, Mandy Barnett, Bellamy Brothers, John Berry, Savannah Berry, Jim Ed Brown, T Graham Brown, Paulette Carlson, Helen Cornelius, Sarah Darling, Narvel Felts, Janie Fricke, David Frizzell, Steve & Rudy Gatlin, Mickey Gilley, Teea Goans, Marty Haggard, Wade Hayes, Ken Mellons, Kelly Lang, Ronnie McDowell, Moore & Moore, Lee Roy Parnell, Eddy Raven, Charlie Rich, Jr., Sammy Sadler, Sarah Dunn Band, Jeannie Seely, Ashton Shepherd, TG Sheppard, Daryle Singletary, Doug Stone, Sweethearts of the Rodeo, The Auctioneers, The Roys, Leroy Van Dyke, Leona Williams, Mark Wills, and Billy Yates. Due to large crowds of fans in 2014, the Durango Music Spot was expanded this year to include more than 800 seats. The Durango Music Spot operates Thursday through Sunday, June 11-14 (11:00 AM-4:00 PM/CT). The stage is hosted by and broadcast live on 650-AM WSM, WSMonline.com, and the 650-AM WSM Official Mobile App. Nearby – and sure to be a crowd pleaser – the world-famous Budweiser Clydesdale horses will be making another appearance at the Festival and will be housed for the first time at Fan Fair X. Nashville’s “Signature” Event Artist meet and greets are a highlight of the Ultimate Country Music Fan Experience. The CMA Music Festival offers the chance to do just that – as well as opportunities for prizes, special VIP exclusives, and once in a lifetime fan experiences through a special drawing known as the Ultimate Fan Experience. Launched in 2012, CMA has built on the success of the online drawing so that fans don’t have to spend time waiting in long lines only to leave empty-handed and disappointed. The procedures for seeking meet-and-greets at the CMA Music Festival improve safety, and make the process of securing a treasured meet-and-greet with the most popular artists equitable for all Festival goers. Of the numerous artists appearing in Fan Fair X over the four-day event, most signings do not require tickets. In these instances, fans may freely join the line formations for non-ticketed signings. To sign up for the ticket drawing for meet and greet sessions and fan “experiences” including front-row seats for the CMA Close Up Stage, a “Fast Pass” for the CMA Booth, tickets to 2016 CMA Music Festival, and more, fans must first enter online at CMAfest.com from Thursday, May 28 (10:00 AM/CT) to Monday, June 1 (11:59 PM/CT). Fans will be prompted to create an account and complete the online entry form by selecting the artist they would like to meet from the list of ticketed meet-and-greet sessions. Please note: only one account per person is permitted and fans can only be selected once. Once the form is complete, fans are automatically entered into the random ticket drawing for each artist selected. If drawn, the fan will receive two tickets to that session. Winners will be notified by email by Friday, June 5. Some of the many artists signing autographs in the CMA Booth include: Kix Brooks, Kristian Bush, Roy Clark, Jessie James Decker, Brenda Lee, Little Big Town, Marshall Tucker Band, Neal McCoy, Parmalee, Canaan Smith, Jamie Lynn Spears, Sunny Sweeney, Thompson Square, and Chris Young. Kidsville Back in 2015 are special activities in AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X just for children and families. Kid-friendly activities include a seating area with food and ice cream; a celebration of teachers and learning presented by Farmers Insurance; an instrument petting zoo presented by the Nashville Symphony; a mobile recording studio operated by CMA Foundation partner Notes for Notes; and Imagination Library including story time with Llama Llama, sing-along with a virtual Dolly Parton, and crafts. Marketplace AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X features an area known as the Marketplace where fans can purchase gifts and mementos for themselves and as gifts for friends and family. CMA, along with Nashville-based A3 Merchandise, developed an expanded product line of unique and trendy apparel for fans to take a piece of the Festival home. Items can be pre-ordered at CMAfest.com for direct delivery to fans’ homes so they can come dressed and ready for fun. On-site during the Festival, merchandise locations will be nearly doubled, giving fans more selection and greater access to the souvenirs they want for friends and family. Sure to be a collectors’ item, the CMA Music Festival limited edition, vintage Fan Fair T-shirt will only be available at CMAfest.com while quantities last. Entertainment Value AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X is free to all CMA Music Festival LP Field ticket holders. If you do not have a four-day Festival ticket, tickets to Fan Fair X are available now at CMAfest.com. AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X tickets are $10 per day or $25 for a four-day pass. For the first time, fans will be able to purchase a four-day pass to the AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X that includes a general admission ticket to the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum that is good for use any day in 2015. The package deal goes on sale Thursday, May 14 through Friday, June 12 and costs $39.95. The combination AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X/Country Music Hall of Fame tickets are available at the Country Music Hall of Fame box office and via the website, http://countrymusichalloffame.org/cmafest2015 Stay Connected For upcoming talent announcements and all other info stay connected with CMA on CMAfest.com, Facebook.com/CMA, Twitter.com/CountryMusic, Instagram.com/CMA, and sign up for CMA Exclusive, CMA’s email newsletter. Fans can also download the 2015 CMA Music Festival mobile app, presented by AT&T U-verse for iPhone or Android to view the latest artist lineups and to plan their Festival experience. CMA Music Festival is organized and produced by the Country Music Association. Fan Fair® is a registered trademark of CMA.