The 25-year-old country singer was on stage with Little Big Town during a performance of the legendary stage show in Nashville, Tennessee, on Tuesday, when she was surprised in a big way by the country music group.
The group slyly changed some key lyrics in one of the songs they were performing to invite the unsuspecting songstress to join the long-running and historic music show.
Ballerini took to Instagram to post a heartwarming snapshot of the emotional surprise and to share her love and appreciation.
“I don’t have the right words yet, but @littlebigtown just asked me to become the newest member of the @opry,” she captioned the pic. “This has been at the very top of my bucket list since I wrote my first songs at 12 years old, and tonight the heart of country music wrapped their arms around me and asked me to be family.”
“In tears over how much this means to me,” she added. “Thank you thank you thank you.”
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I don’t have the right words yet, but @littlebigtown just asked me to become the newest member of the @opry. This has been at the very top of my bucket list since I wrote my first songs at 12 years old, and tonight the heart of country music wrapped their arms around me and asked me to be family. In tears over how much this means to me. Thank you thank you thank you. 😭💕 // 📸 @johnshearer @gettyimages
The Grand Ole Opry posted a few photos of the celebratory moment as well, sharing the news of her invitation.
“BREAKING: @kelseaballerini has just been invited to become the newest member of the Grand Ole #Opry by @littlebigtown!” the Opry declared in the caption.
The exciting moment came after Ballerini had already performed her set, and Karen Fairchild, Kimberly Schlapman, Phillip Sweet and Jimi Westbrook of Little Big Town asked her to come back on stage to perform with them.
“To be on this stage is the greatest gift in the world,” Ballerini said after gleefully accepting the invitation. “This is the home of country music, and I get to be a part of it.”
The GRAMMY-nominated artist is set to be inducted into the Opry on April 16, and will be the youngest current Opry member.