Johnny Cash Comes To Vancouver Island At The Chemainus Theatre!

Johnny Cash resurrected and live at the Chemainus Theatre on Vancouver Island! The Man In Black himself performs in Ring Of Fire Project Johnny Cash.

Chemainus Theatre Festival Review of “Ring Of Fire: Project Johnny Cash”

So I married into a family that absolutely loves the buffet. You know, where you pay one price and eat whatever and however much you want?

The first time Jay and I enjoyed dinner at the Chemainus Theatre’s Playbill Dining Room, I have to admit, I left uncomfortably full and Jay secretly undid his belt.  It’s so hard though because the food is just. that. good.

I just have to try everything and when it’s so good, it’s hard to only eat a little bit.


So here I am writing about another dining experience at the Playbill and I have to say, I’m doing better. The food is still wonderful, but I’m now learning to take just a tiny bit of everything. By the time I’ve had just that tiny bit of everything, I’m pleasantly full and ready to go watch a great show.

I can’t yet say the same for Jay though.

At one point during our meal, I looked across the table and counted six different kinds of meat on his plate. SIX! And then he did the same for dessert.  Another SIX!

I suppose he figures I’ll never make dinner with six meats and six desserts, so where better to indulge than at The Playbill Dining Room?!

Chemainus Dinner Theatre, Chemainus Theatre Festival, Playbill Dining

As always, I find it incredibly relaxing to begin the evening at The Chemainus Theatre with dinner there.  I’m never nervous about being late for the show and I know my tastebuds and tummy will be thoroughly satisfied.

It really adds to the whole wonderful experience and makes the night complete.

Do you remember when music used to tell a story?

It didn’t just make you want to get up and dance, it helped you understand more about the true lives of people who walk the earth just like you.

When you were down and out, it helped you know you weren’t alone.  When you felt like shouting from the rooftops in joy, it reminded you that others have felt the same way.

Music told stories and in “Ring of Fire: Project Johnny Cash” I learned the story of the life of Johnny Cash told through the music he wrote.

Chemainus Theatre, Johnny Cash, Ring of Fire, Vancouver Island
Photo by Cim MacDonald

Jay and I walked into the theatre to see a simple and inviting stage set with drums, keyboard, guitars, and microphones. And it was there we settled into this musical revue on the life and times of Mr. Johnny Cash, narrated by an older version of the Man in Black himself.

If you’re a fan of his music, you’ll love sitting and listening. If you don’t know anything about him, you’ll be surprised at what songs you know and I dare you to keep your feet from tapping.

Go ahead, I dare you.

Chemainus Theatre, Vancouver Island Theatre, Vancouver Island vacation, Ring Of fire, Man in black, Project Johnny Cash
Photo by Cim MacDonald

We sat next to a couple who came up from Victoria for their first-ever experience at The Chemainus Theatre.  They enjoyed themselves immensely and once or twice she very quietly joined in with Johnny…apparently sometimes one can’t quite help oneself.

When I looked around at the rest of the audience, I realized she wasn’t alone.  There was pure delight on many faces. People looked like they were transported to a real-life performance of Johnny Cash. It was fun.  There were times we clapped along with the band, and times we just sat back and let it sink in.

Chemainus Theatre images, date night at chemainus theatre, Vancouver Island theatre

I watched and learned of Cash’s humble beginnings, his love for June Carter Cash, and I learned that being a musician isn’t always easy.

Johnny had a deep appreciation for his fans and wrote songs that resonated with them.

Johnny Cash, Chemainus Theatre, Vancouver Island, Ring Of Fire, Project ring of fire, Man in Black, Chemainus

Songs of faith, family, love, and making it through hard times. His sound was revolutionary and he could play most any style: southern gospel, country, and rock n’ roll.

In fact, he was so good, he and Elvis Presley are the only musicians to be inducted into both the County and Rock n’ Roll Halls of Fame.

That’s some accomplishment!

His music still resonates today.  I was surprised how many songs I knew and could relate to.  He was truly one of the greats.

As we were leaving the theatre, we stopped by the display at the entrance to the Playbill Dining Room to look at some of the authentic Johnny Cash memorabilia.Three REAL records, a real family photo album and even the true poster of The Man in Black that was displayed in his long-time manager Saul Holiff’s office, who retired in Nanaimo.

What fun to interact with these pieces and play around with them as well.

Johnny Cash Gold Records, Johnny Cash Chemainus Theatre, Chemainus

Johnny Cash, Chemainus Theatre, Project Johnny Cash: Ring of fire, Vancouver Island date night, romantic getaways on Vancouver Island, Chemainus Hotel

I think Jay and I look like we’re ready to hit the road ourselves…what do you think?

If you want to make a whole romantic getaway out of your theatre experience. Be sure to stay at the Best Western Plus Chemainus Inn and check out their Theatre getaway package. It includes a dinner theatre, overnight stay and breakfast in the am.

Book your Chemainus Theatre tickets for “Ring Of Fire: Project Johnny Cash” before they are sold out!

While our experience at Chemainus Theatre was complimentary, you can rest assured that our thoughts, opinions, and findings are our own as always.


  • Hi, Thanks so much for the very kind words about our show, "Ring of Fire" I was one of the cast members of the show. (the woman with the dark hair) and I am also the Education Coordinator at Chemainus Theatre Festival. I am holding 2 weeks of summer camp this summer and was hoping you could let your readers know about it. It's a super-fun experience for kids ages 10-17. There is more information about the camp on our website here: Please let me know if you need any more information. Warmest Regards, Andrea Cross Education Coordinator Chemainus Theatre Festival 250.246.9800 x728 [email protected] - Reply