Long before Carly Pearce was a hit-making award-winning country star, she was a teenager with a dream. When she was just sixteen, she convinced her parents to relocate from Kentucky to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee so she could play at Dollywood. As a result, she witnessed the Christmas magic of the theme park firsthand.
These days, Carly Pearce looks back fondly on her days on the Dollywood stage. This year, though, Pearce is bringing in the holiday season on the stage of Nashville’s Steel Mill as the host of this year’s CMA Country Christmas. Recently, Carly sat down with TV Insider to talk about the show. During the conversation, she reflected on Christmastime in Dollywood.
Carly Pearce on Christmas in Dollywood
“Dollywood is such a magical place for Christmas. What do you remember about working there during this time of year,” the interviewer asked.
“I actually talk about it in the show, which is so funny,” Carly Pearce said. “You’re right it’s a magical time around Christmas. I always tell people to go there around this time.” Pearce went on to say that she was 17 when she performed in the Dollywood Christmas show.
However, her time in the Dollywood Christmas show is a far cry from what she’s doing now. Let’s just say that she wasn’t the host of the show. “I performed in ‘Christmas in the Smokies.’ I was the youngest by a lot of years, which meant I had to do everything nobody else wanted to do,” she recalled. Then, she went on to share a memory from the performance. “I wore a massive mascot Frosty the Snowman suit in the show. We sang ‘Frosty the Snowman.’ That’s such a memory for me. Now I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh! I don’t have to wear the Frosty suit anymore.’”
Carly on Hosting CMA Country Christmas
This is the second year in a row that Carly Pearce will host CMA Country Christmas. Last year, she shared hosting duties with Gabby Barrett. This year, though, Carly is flying solo. During the interview, she shared how she feels about returning to host the special.
“I always dreamt of hosting as a kid as much as I did dream of being a country artist,” Carly Pearce revealed. “I used to look at people like Reba especially and really wanted to make that a part of my brand.” Then, she went on to talk about the Christmas special specifically. “The fact that I got to host last year was such a dream come true. It was one of my first hosting gigs at that level. So to get to do it with Gabby felt so easy. To be able to do it on my own and have the CMA ask me back, it really was a huge honor. I had such a good time with it.”
CMA Country Christmas airs tomorrow, December 8th at 9/8c on ABC. It will be available to stream on Hulu and Disney+ the next day.