A baker's dozen of talented performers make the Lucille Ball Little Theatre of Jamestown's newest production a sure cure for the mid-winter blahs.
''Ring of Fire'' is more of a concert than a play, featuring more than 30 of the songs which were frequently performed by the late, popular singer Johnny Cash. From the black gloom of ''Folsom Prison Blues'' to the silliness of ''A Boy Named Sue,'' the cast sings, dances and plays many instruments in an almost uninterrupted series of performances.
The program doesn't name who sings which songs, and most of them were duets, trios and group numbers, so I'll just be happy to name the strong cast and the musicians who were as much a part of the performance as the singers. They were Dave Young, Bryan Voorhis, Adam McKillip, Rich Hartling, Melanie Luciano, Julie Cotter, Jennifer Davis and Nora Cole.
Also, Heather Young, Sandi Walrod, Gale Svenson-Campbell, Matt Tomb and Greg Hoitink.
From time to time, segments of Cash's life would be narrated, often pointing out how events in his songs grew from events which had happened in his personal life, from the flood which drove him and his family out of their home, when he was just a boy - ''Five Feet High and Rising'' - to his courtship of June Carter - ''If I Were a Carpenter" - to his eventual victory over pain killing drugs and alcohol - ''I Walk the Line.''
Director Helen Merrill moved her 13 performers skillfully, keeping our visual interest and focusing our attention on where it should be.
''Ring of Fire'' debuted at Buffalo's late, lamented Studio Arena Theatre, and transferred to Broadway. Many people think it is similar to the Academy Award-winning film ''I Walk the Line," in which actors play Cash and the major figures in his life, but instead, it is a celebration of him and his music, and everyone seemed to be having a wonderful time.
The show repeats tonight, tomorrow afternoon, and Feb. 10-12, at the regular venue of the Lucille Ball Little Theatre of Jamestown, on East Second St., in downtown.