Patsy Cline: ‘American Idol’ Alum to Perform Shows About Music Legend’s Life

by Lauren Boisvert
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Two “American Idol” alumni, Diana DeGarmo and her husband Ace Young, are starring in a show about music legend Patsy Cline. They’re performing three shows in Massachusetts celebrating Patsy Cline and her incredible life and career.

The show in question is Dean Reagan’s musical “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline.” The show began as a hit across Canada, and a run in Boston started its popularity in the U.S. It’s also sanctioned by the Patsy Cline Estate, so it’s respectful, legitimate, and celebratory. Patsy Cline’s husband, Charlie Dick, is also a production advisor on the show.

DeGarmo and Young are Broadway veterans as well as “American Idol” alums; in a statement from DeGarmo, she described played Patsy Cline in the show as a realization of a lifelong dream. In 2021, DeGarmo also starred as Cline in the Ted Swindley show “Always…Patsy Cline” at STAGES in St. Louis. Now, she’s taking on the legendary country singer again in “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline.”

This Patsy Cline show is a collaboration with College Light Opera Company in Falmouth, Massachusetts, and Art Lab in Boston. The show will run at the CLOC’s John R. Lucas Hall in West Falmouth from March 17 to 19. “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline” has amazing reviews, and with backing from Patsy Cline’s Estate and husband, it’s sure to be an enlightening, heartwarming experience for Patsy Cline fans.

Patsy Cline’s Life and Influence

Patsy Cline died at the age of 30 in a plane crash on March 5, 1963, but her influence is still felt today. She is considered one of the most influential country singers, and especially as a trailblazer for women in the industry. Cline was among the first to headline concerts and sell records. She was contemporaries with Loretta Lynn and Dottie West, and the three helped shape country music for female artists.

In 1973, ten years after her death, she was the first woman to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. While she was in the hospital after a near-fatal car accident in 1951, her single “I Fall to Pieces” topped the country music charts. “Walkin’ After Midnight” was her first hit on both the pop and country charts.

Patsy Cline didn’t initially have an interest in singing. It was when she was recovering from a throat infection as a teenager that she developed a love for it. In 1957 she spoke about it, saying, “I developed a terrible throat infection and my heart even stopped beating. The doctor put me in an oxygen tent. You might say it was my return to the living after several days that launched me as a singer. The fever affected my throat and when I recovered I had this booming voice like Kate Smith’s.”

Patsy Cline was an amazing talent; “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline” is sure to bring her influence to a wider audience.

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