A few years ago, there was quite a stir on the Great White Way when country star Reba Macintyre took Broadway by tornado with her star turn in "Annie Get Your Gun". Now the connection is running the other way as Broadway's Laura Bell Bundy ("Hairspray", Legally Blonde") is taking on Nashville.
Last night, LBB did an almost Broadway style number in the middle of the CMA awards to launch her first country album, "Achin' and Shakin'". And she was not kidding around. The blonde diva did some serious line dancing which certainly looked like country on the surface but, with all the high kicks and bounding leaps, felt more like a scene out of "Oklahoma".
LBB actually grew up in the south, born and raised in Kentucky so her new act is not much of a put-on as it seemed. But I find it interesting how country music, which was recently invaded by rock/pop legend Bon Jovi, is now getting an attack from the world of musical theatre. In some ways, it actually makes sense in that there has always been something very Broadway about country, with it's storytelling songs, corn-pone sentiment and classic American melodies. So it'll be interesting to see if the country world embraces LBB as she goes back to her roots.