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Carrie, across the threshold


After selling more than a million tickets to her last concert tour, Carrie Underwood is aiming higher this time.

The former “American Idol” winner, who turned 27 on Wednesday, wants to follow the success of her third album, “Play On,” with something dynamite for her fans on her current tour, which kicked off Thursday.

“The stage is bigger, there are more lights, there’s more tricks up our sleeve,” Underwood says. “We have a lot of moving parts on the stage. I kind of get to fly over the audience. It’s really cool.”

She’s taking a more low-key approach in planning her wedding to Mike Fisher of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators.

Trying to plan a tour and wedding at the same time could be overwhelming, but Underwood’s not stressing.

“Have you ever been to a wedding where you thought how awful the tablecloths were? Probably not,” she says. “You probably don’t even remember the tablecloths. Why get stressed out about little things like that?”

The couple got engaged shortly before Christmas and have set a date that they hope to keep private. Underwood says they haven’t even told family and friends, in an effort to keep unwelcome cameras away.

“Not to say even anybody would care to show up, but just in case,” she says. “I’m not going to be Carrie Underwood the entertainer walking down the aisle. I’m just Carrie, and I’m going to marry Mike. I feel like that’s kind of a right everybody deserves to have.”

The birthday bunch

Actor Judd Hirsch is 75. Bassist Phil Lesh (Grateful Dead) is 70. Singer Mike Love (Beach Boys) is 69. Singer-keyboardist Sly Stone (Sly and the Family Stone) is 67. Singer Dee Snider (Twisted Sister) is 55. Actress Park Overall is 53. Model Fabio is 49. Singer Bret Michaels (Poison) is 47. Actress Eva Longoria Parker is 35. Rapper (Black Eyed Peas) is 35.