Greeneville will welcome a new country star Saturday when Laura Bell Bundy performs what she promises will be a fun concert at the Niswonger Performing Arts Center.
Bundy, a rising country music star whose hit singles include “Giddy On Up,” which reached No. 31 on the U.S. Billboard Country Charts, and her newest release, “Two-Step,” spoke about the show and her career in a phone interview.
Although she has lived in Nashville, the concert will mark Bundy’s first trip to Greeneville. Bundy said that her fans should expect a high energy, entertaining show.
“A concert should have an added level of entertainment that you don’t get when you put a CD in your car,” Bundy said. “ I try to make my concerts entertaining. We have a lot of fun.”
Bundy’s set list for the concert includes her original work and some covers she has personalized.
“It’s a really fun show,” said the singer/actress who often just goes by the initials LBB.
Bundy’s last album — Achin’ and Shakin’ — debuted in 2010. She has been progressing toward a new album that has a new feeling with her latest single, “Two-Step.”
“I would say the new stuff is basically country dance music,” Bundy said. “It has a very danceable feeling to it. I’m not going to be doing the heavy hip-hop stuff feeling at the concert, though,” she said, laughing.
Her prior single, “Kentucky Dirty,” was released on iTunes last November.
Bundy’s talents aren’t just limited to singing in cowboy boots on stage. Her acting career is intertwined with her career as a singer, and almost always has been. Bundy started acting in New York theater when she was nine years old. She soon expanded into movies and television. At age 14, she landed a role in Jumanji (1995) and in 2000, she appeared in several episodes of the daytime serial, Guiding Light.
She will be stepping away from the set for the production of Anger Management in Los Angeles to give her concert in Greeneville. She also has appearances in Hart of Dixie and How I Met Your Mother.
Bundy said that acting is always prevalent in a singer’s career, and she has always found herself doing a little bit of both.
“The truth of the matter is, you can’t really sing a song without acting,” she said. “No singer is a good singer without emoting. For me, it’s always been a blend of those two worlds, acting and music.”
In addition to her performances on stage as a country artist, Bundy has also paid a few visits to the Broadway stage. In 2007, she starred in the Broadway adaptation of “Legally Blonde” as the musical’s persevering, pink protagonist, Elle Woods. Bundy also received a Tony nomination for Best Actress in a Musical for the role.
In addition to “Legally Blonde,” Bundy has also played Amber Von Tussle in “Hairspray” and originally earned a standby role of Glinda in “Wicked,” but had to drop the role due to scheduling conflicts.
Bundy said that her work on the stage connects her to her audience.
“A play is a story brought to life, if you add music to it, it adds a higher level of emotion,” Bundy said of her Broadway career. “Those words and music come through you and go to the audience. You’re being a channel.”
Off Broadway, Bundy earned a role in “Ruthless! The Musical” in 1993 as Tina Denmark, with Britney Spears and Natalie Portman as her understudies.
She was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Musical for the role.
Bundy said that performing as a country music artist is much different on an emotional level than her experience as a Broadway entertainer.
“The difference is that in a concert, I’m being myself as opposed to being a character in a play,” she said.
Tickets for Bundy’s Feb. 1 concert are still available through the Niswonger Performing Arts Center in Greeneville.
Bundy will perform at NPAC in historic downtown Greeneville at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1. Tickets are $25 for orchestra and mezzanine level seating and $15 for balcony seats. Tickets may be purchased online at www.npacgreeneville.com, in person at the NPAC box office, or by calling 638-1679.
NPAC offers online seat selection and no-fee ticketing. The box office hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. The 1,130-seat performing arts center is located adjacent to the campus of Greeneville High School in Greeneville. For venue information, and to purchase tickets, please visit www.npacgreeneville.com.
She promises the upcoming concert will be a fun-filled evening. It’s fun that is at the heart of her philosophy.
“The motivation is not to be famous, it’s to have fun until I drop dead,” Bundy said.
Article by Star Intern Jessica Fuller.