Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Cash & Carry

Posted By on Wed, Mar 22, 2006 at 4:00 AM

Cash & Carry Ring of Fire, a musical tribute to Johnny Cash, who began his long, storied career at Memphis’ Sun Studio, opened at Broadway’s Ethel Barrymore theatre on Sunday, and the New York critics haven’t been terribly kind. The New York Times’ Ben Brantley claimed that Ring of Fire "wrestles with a real bad case of the cutes," and then compared the musical’s singers to performers on The Lawrence Welk Show. The New York Post’s Clive Barnes described the lighthearted tribute to The Man in Black as, “a Cash-and-carry anthology," and The New York Sun's Eric Grode called Ring of Fire “the theme-park-ready Johnny Cash jukebox musical that has yelped its way to Broadway.”

Only USA Today’s Elysa Gardner seemed to like Ring of Fire, noting that the cast “offers some of the best singing you're likely to hear on Broadway this season.” Gardner’s compliments came at the expense of another Memphis icon whose musical tribute opened on Broadway in 2005. “As anyone who suffered through last year's Elvis-themed karaoke contest All Shook Up could tell you,” Gardner wrote, “not all musical-theater voices are suited to rawer, rootsier material.” Read more.

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