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Best Bets: Johnny minus Johnny

“Ring of Fire,” featuring the music of Johnny Cash, opens today at The Underground. Photo by Andrew Benusa.

Consider this Johnny, sans Johnny.

“Ring of Fire” is the Cash-flavored jukebox musical that considers his greatest hits while using a loose plot as an excuse to sing, for instance, “Jackson.”

(Think “Mama Mia” for the Man in Black).

This show got the nod from Cash before he died in 2003. He isn’t a character in this piece, but his story is told through the music.

Don’t expect to see a staged version of “Walk the Line,” starring Joaquin Phoenix – which premiered in theaters around the time this landed on stages.

“Ring of Fire,” by Richard Maltby, is a sunnier take on the guy who famously sang “I killed a man in Reno just to watch him die.”

“Ring of Fire” features Abe Curran, Mary Fox, Robert Lee, Dylan Rugh and Blake Thomas.

GO SEE IT What: “Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash,” directed by Mary Fox and Blake Thomas

When: Opens 7:30 p.m. today; 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday through June 21

Where: The Underground, 506 W. Michigan St.

Tickets: $16 adults, $12 students at or (218) 733-7526

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