Reality TV generates stars now as often if not more often that scripted TV, from the Robertsons of "Duck Dynasty" (which just drew a record cable viewership of 11.8 million) to the Guidices of "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" to the "Honey Boo Boo" clan in South Georgia.
Many have become such strong brands, they are now doing stage shows to solidify their names and give fans a chance to get up close (or sort of close) and personal.
Here are some shows coming to Atlanta in upcoming months featuring reality TV stars and acts:
* Mythbusters: Behind the Myths: Adam Savage & Jamie Hyneman, 8 p.m., August 30, Fox Theatre. Buy tickets here, $42-$122 before fees. The Emmy-nominated duo will do on-stage experiments, audience participation, video and behind-the-scenes stories. Fans will be able to join Jamie and Adam on stage and assist in their mind-twisting and not always orthodox approach to science.
* NBC's "America's Got Talent" tour, October 8, Fox Theatre, buy tickets here. $32-42 before fees. We don't even know who the acts are yet because the show is still paring the top 60 down to the top 20. But guaranteed, there will be plenty of singers because viewers love singers, especially singer songwriter types and pop operatic folks, based on past winners. There are a few acts that look especially promising including Cami Bradley, a female pianist who sang "Believe" this past week, opera singer Jonathan Allen and Innovative Force, an acrobatic team.
* Food Network's "Barefoot Contessa" Ina Garten, October 16, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, buy tickets here. $33.75-$53.75 before fees. Garten has been on the Food Network since 2002. According to the Cobb Energy website, "Ina Garten shares her natural approach to food; sharing tips, stories, and maybe even some recipes. Onstage, Ina Garten delivers a charming insider's view of the world of the Barefoot Contessa and the pleasures of good food, cooked with love and passion, and engages the audience in an interactive Q&A."
* Theresa Caputo, TLC's "Long Island Medium," October 20, Fox Theatre, buy tickets here. $54.95-$108.45 including fees. She came last year to the Fox Theatre and clearly, it was a success because she has returned. Caputo gives live readings to audience members throughout the show. Plus, she will share personal stories about her life balancing the unpredictability of her psychic gifts while maintaining her role as a typical Long Island wife and mom. You can read my interview with her a year ago.
* "So You Think You Can Dance" tour, October 25, Cobb Performing Arts Centre, buy tickets here. $37-$62 before fees. Enjoy the top 10 finalists from this season, which isn't even over yet. Even better news: a local Lawrenceville dancer Jasmine Harper will be part of the crew and she has a solid shot at winning the entire season, just like Marietta's Melanie Moore two years ago. I wrote about her when she reached the top 20.
* TruTV's "Impractical Jokers," January 18, 2014, The Tabernacle. Buy tickets here. $35 before fees. Sure, this is five months away but if you like to plan, tickets are already on sale. These childhood friends are hilarious! I just wrote about them a couple weeks ago.
* Food Network's Alton Brown, the "Edible Inevitable Tour," February 28, 2014, Fox Theatre. Buy tickets here. $51.70-$73.60 after fees. Speaking of planning in advance, these tickets went on sale in June, seven months prior to the event. Our very own Food Network personality, who has hosted "Good Eats," "Iron Chef America" and "Food Network Star," will put on a fun show, for sure. I've seen him live at the Variety Playhouse and Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre. He knows how to keep a crowd entertained. He promotes the upcoming tour a bit here: